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News: Paid leave for dads, Red Cross gifts and weight gain confusion

In an effort to bring you all the latest news and research in the pregnancy and parenting sphere (and, let’s face it, in an effort to clean out my inbox) I’ve created this weekly (but don’t hold me to that) column – The Weekly (maybe) News Round-Up: Now in its second (although, non-consecutive) week!

Parental leave for dads and partners

The Australian Government is now offering Dad and Partner Pay under the Paid Parental Leave scheme. It is available to eligible working dads or partners (including adopting parents and same-sex partners) who care for a child born of adopted from January 1, 2013.

Those eligible will have access to two weeks of government-funded pay at the minimum wage – which is currently about $606 before tax.

For more information visit this link

Give a gift someone really needs

The Australian Red Cross is urging Aussies to give a Christmas gift that is truly needed this year.

To support the Red Cross this festive season you can make a one-off or regular donation. Your money would go towards providing more than 750,000 healthy breakfasts for children – who otherwise would go to school hungry – or helping provide food and support to homeless people. It could provide a daily phone call to an elderly Australian to make them feel more secure in their homes; it could help reconnect families torn apart; provide safe drinking water to in Asia-Pacific communities; or help rebuild after a natural disaster.

For more information see www.redcross.org.au or call 1800 811 700.

Mums-to-be confused about weight gain

Two-thirds of Aussie mums-to-be don’t know how much weight they should gain during pregnancy, according to a new study from the Queensland University of Technology.

The study participants also reported that they received very little advice about healthy weight gain.

Researcher Susie de Jersey says mums-to-be need intensive, personalised support if they’ve battled with weight control on either end of the scale.

“Pregnancy is an important time that influences being overweight in both mothers and their babies,” she says.

“Gaining too much or not enough weight, eating a poor diet and being physically inactive can affect the health of both mothers and their babies well into the future.

“For most healthy, younger women, pregnancy is one of the few times they will visit health professionals regularly. It’s the perfect opportunity to change the whole environment for their families.

If your pre-pregnancy BMI was: Less than 18.5 kg/m² you should gain: 12½ to 18kg
If your pre-pregnancy BMI was: 18.5 to 24.9 kg/m² you should gain: 11½ to 16kg
If your pre-pregnancy BMI was: 25 to 29.9 kg/m² you should gain: 7 to 11½kg
If your pre-pregnancy BMI was: Above 30 kg/m² you should gain: 5 to 9kg

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