Elisabeth Leitner is a midwife in Kleinzell im Mühlkreis, a small Austrian town near the German and Czech borders. Before opening her midwifery practice, she clicked through Instagram, looking for sustainable children's toys she could recommend to families. And came across QUADRO.
Then one thing led to another: She discovered the QUADRO community on Facebook, saw the many great construction ideas of the enthusiastic users there - and was in QUADRO fever.
She asked us if we would provide an adventure construction kit for her practice. We were happy to comply with this request, because we were interested in what exactly a midwife does - besides delivering babies.
So what does a midwife do?
First of all, Elisabeth receives in her practice women and families who want to have children and advises them in addition to the gynecologist on these questions: What should I eat? How does the cycle work? When is the best time for sexual intercourse if I want to get pregnant?
If everything goes well, the woman gets pregnant - and comes back to the practice. Namely, for a mother-child counseling session in the 18th to 22nd week of pregnancy, which is paid for by the health insurance in Austria. The counseling is about nutrition and about how the woman can stay healthy during the pregnancy. The options for giving birth are discussed: whether in a hospital, at a birth center or at home.
If the women had not already been there for fertility counseling, at this point it comes to a first acquaintance. Here it is important that the chemistry is right, because the two women will meet again later in an intimate moment: when a new person comes into the family, the parents get to know the newborn, build a relationship with it, adapt to the new situation. The postpartum visit takes place at home with the family from the 4th to the 8th week after the birth. Therefore, it is important that the woman can trust the midwife. She also learns to integrate breastfeeding into her daily routine during the visit.
In addition, Elisabeth offers childbirth and breastfeeding preparation courses and advises families on the subsequent introduction of complementary feeding or breastfeeding problems.
"And the actual birth?", we asked.
Yes, Elisabeth is also there, but these are usually not the same women who come to her practice. Because she has a second leg and also works as a midwife in a hospital. There she cares for the women who are just on site in her working hours.
She finds this combination of freelancing and a fixed job ideal, because on the one hand she feels safe in the hospital environment and on the other hand also has fixed working hours there, with which she can plan well. However, she has colleagues who offer home births - that is also very well received.
And QUADRO? As a midwife, what does she think of our product ideas?
"Not only are they sustainable, but they also add value to the children," she says.
Families can always use the same material and build a bed out of it, a learning tower, a climbing frame or something else.
She adds, "It's not like you buy a learning tower first and dispose of it later when the child grows up and needs a play tower instead."
In fact, QUADRO can be adapted to the child's new motor skills. It grows with the child - and that's not only environmentally friendly, but also cost-saving (for more on why climbing is so important for kids, see the article Jungle Gyms: The Perfect Way to Give Your Children’s Development a Boost).
For herself and her husband, building the adventure kit for the first time was a challenge. The two had to look at what went where, how to turn the holes. They had a fun afternoon building it. But once they understood the principle, it went very quickly.
Now the Adventure is in the play corner of Elisabeth's practice and thrills the tots who accompany their pregnant mothers.
"All the children who have played with it so far think it's great," Elisabeth laughs.
And we're delighted that we're getting such nice news from the family and children's sector and that we've hit the bull's eye with the Adventure.