Äimä ry is a peer support association
In 1998, Äimä ry was launched with the idea that in addition to the help provided by public health care, peer support activities are also vital. With the help of peer support, Äimä ry helps mothers with depression during pregnancy or after childbirth, or mothers who have experienced postpartum psychosis. The association also works to spread information on these diseases.
In addition to helping mothers, the association supports babies, children, spouses, relatives, and other loved ones. In addition to the actual staff, there are about 40 trained volunteers working in Äimä ry. There are peer support mothers all over Finland.
Free peer support is available for those who need help. We function in a multi-channel manner: In addition to peer support groups, you can call the peer support helpline, take part in a peer-to-peer chat, or meet a peer support mother face-to-face or online. All support is also intended for those who are not members of the association.
Äimä ry provides information to people at health trade fairs and the Äimä ry guidebook about postpartum depression is used in Finnish maternity clinics. The Association organises many events each year for mothers, couples, and the whole family.
Äimä ry is politically and religiously unaffiliated. The association receives financial support from the income of Veikkaus.
Support directly from mothers to mothers
Peer support is mutual help, support, and sharing of experiences. A peer supporter can give another person on the same level good practical advice. Completely new perspectives on things may even open up. Practical life-life experience cannot be read in books!
Talking to other mothers who are or have been in a similar situation is often rewarding. It can also help you to find more practical ways of coping. It is important that another person listens and understands. The unwell mother will feel like she is being heard! Even the sense of unnecessary shame can dissipate.
The peer support has been the main aid for many mothers in their recovery from postpartum depression or postpartum psychosis. For some, peer support has provided a major added bonus on their way to a new and better life.
The peer mothers have themselves experienced depression during pregnancy, postpartum depression, or postpartum psychosis. They have recovered and thus also act as positive models for those who are still struggling.
More about the support Äimä ry provides can be found here.