Olwen Rowe and Méabh Lyons with Ulrike Höwer from Die Trageschule® Dresden, in Didcot (the UK) June 2017.
Following extensive training with Ulrike Höwer from Die Trageschule® Dresden, Olwen Rowe and Méabh Lyons are Die Trageschule® trainers for health professionals, babywearing consultants and peer advocates. With Ulrike’s support, they co-founded Die Tragechule® Ireland in 2017. Ulrike founded Die Trageschule® in Germany more than 20 years ago in order to give babywearing consultants the skills and knowledge needed to work with families with babies and children. In designing and updating Die Trageschule® training courses, Ulrike Hower has worked closely with medical professionals and researchers. Since 1998, Ulrike Höwer has trained more than 1500 babywearing consultants all around the world in different countries and cultures. She is the mentor and trainer of Die Trageschule® trainers worldwide, including in Germany, Austria, Slovenia, the Netherlands, Ireland, the UK, Australia, Malaysia, Singapore and Mexico. Ulrike has four children and lives in Dresden, a beautiful old baroque city in Germany.
Olwen discovered the wonderful world of babywearing when she was trying to finish her PhD with a new baby and a busy three year old. An ergonomic sling changed everything for her. By some miracle (called babywearing!) Olwen finished her PhD in English in 2009. She was so blown away with the ease that babywearing brought that she helped set up a Babywearing Ireland sling meeting in Galway in 2010. More than eight years later she is still running this meeting with a wonderful team of volunteers. Olwen’s two passions—teaching adults and babywearing—came together when she attended an inspiring Die Trageschule® consultancy course run by Olga Nguyen in Dublin in 2011. Following this, Olwen set up her babywearing consultancy in Galway, Born to be Carried. She found the Die Trageschule® teaching methods transformative – the teaching methods were clear and confidence building. After completing Die Trageschule® Certification level training and working with many families with a variety of needs, Olwen wanted to become a trainer herself and began training to be a Die Trageschule® trainer in 2015. Olwen’s academic research interests had primarily focused on identity and our sense of self, and her experiences as a mother brought it home to her that our sense of ourselves and our understanding of our place in the world have their very foundation in our earliest relationships. Because of this, Olwen is passionate about perinatal and infant mental health. In addition to being a babywearing educator, Olwen is a voluntary breastfeeding counsellor, has trained as a postpartum doula and is a licensed Baby Bonding practitioner. Olwen has three children and lives just outside Galway City, where she can dip into city-life and enjoy living in the country.
Méabh trained as a nurse specialising in Intellectual Disability and has many years experience working with adults and children with additional needs and mental health difficulties. When she had her first baby, Méabh was delighted to discover babywearing. Slings made life so much easier with a baby, and then with a baby and a toddler! Since having her two girls, Méabh’s passion for babywearing led her to helping set up and volunteering with a Babywearing Ireland Sling Meet in Kildare in 2013. By running the sling meet, it became clear to Méabh that she wanted to learn more about babywearing on a professional level, and later in 2013 she completed the foundation level of Die Trageschule® consultancy training. After this Méabh set up a babywearing consultancy and online shop called Snugglebugs with Tricia Nugent in Co. Kildare and Dublin. Fuelled by her passion to learn more, Méabh completed an intensive four days training with Je Porte Mom Bebe before progressing on to the Advanced and Certification level of Die Trageschule® courses. With these courses and working with parents, Méabh built up great experience and wanted to share these skills with other professionals. In 2015 Méabh began the process of training as a Die Trageschule® trainer. In January 2017, Méabh flew with Olwen to Dresden to complete training with Ulrike Höwer. This was a truly inspiring course and the start of Die Tragechule Ireland, which is the first Babywearing Training school based in Ireland. Méabh is passionate about creating a community of babywearing consultants in Ireland and promoting ongoing learning and research. Méabh’s experience working with adults and children with intellectual/ physical disabilities and mental health issues has proved invaluable in her work with families. Méabh has two children and when she is not travelling the world, she lives in the beautiful village of Clane in Co. Kildare.