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Sign up for classes  in 2022 now. 

September 13th - October 18th
November 8th - December 13th



Every pregnant person has the right to an EMPWRed birthing experience. EMPWR's antenatal education is unique for you!

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During this 6 week birth and parenting, antenatal class, we will gently guide you through the unpredictable nature of birth, empower you to make the decisions that are right and unique for you and teach you practical techniques to ensure that you maintain control and autonomy over your body and your birth, every step of the way, even if things don't go quite to plan.

An EMPWRed birth experience, regardless of how you have grown or plan on birthing your baby starts with antenatal classes unique and tailored to you. 

Based in Central Auckland, we're here for all your antenatal education needs.

Find out more about antenatal classes


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Earthside antenatal classes are an inclusive, holistic, 6 week birth and parenting course with an additional postnatal meet up after your baby is born.


Taught by Arlene (she/her) and Lou (they/them), who are both registered midwives with over 10 years of clinical midwifery experience and 4 years of childbirth education.

Grounded in reproductive justice, we believe that every parent has the right to autonomy and self determination in their pregnancy, birth and parenting experience. Regardless of whether you're planning an undisturbed home birth, an elective caesarean, a hospital birth with an epidural or anything in between; we aim to provide you with the tools you need to navigate your experience in a way that feels empowering, positive and unique to you.

There is no right way to grow, birth, parent or feed a baby.

Earthside antenatal classes are gentle, compassionate and kind. They aren't what you might expect. You will not be bored to tears with endless powerpoint presentations or made to feel that your question is silly. We aim to provide you with the information you want to know and the questions that you want answered and if that means we take a tangent, then so be it. Guided by you, with you at the centre of what we teach and discuss, this 6 week antenatal class will be your guide to an empowered birth.

By providing you with evidence based information, guiding you through exploration of your values and helping you develop your informed decision making skills; you will be able to apply these skills to your journey into and throughout parenthood.


Topics Include

Informed decision making

the consumer - care provider relationship and navigating deviations from your plan

Signs & stages of labour

when to call your midwife, how to cope in  labour and practical tips for distraction

The role of support people

how you can assist the birthing person

medical and non-medical techniques, including guidance from an acupuncturist and masseuse

with discomfort

Positive caesarean birth

and tools for recovery


including inducing lactation, co-feeding, donor milk and formula feeding

The basics of caring for your baby

swaddling, settling techniques, nappy changing and more


the transition to parenting, including your postpartum recovery

Who are these classes for?

Everyone! Our antenatal classes are inclusive of all families and all bodies, we are HAES practitioners, inclusive of LGBTQ+ whānau, polyamorous communities, single parents, disabled parents, sex workers and those who need NZSL interpretation. We also have subsidised options for low-income families. Whilst we are celebratory of LGBTQIA+ whānau, anyone is welcome to attend, you don't have to be part of the rainbow community to access evidence based childbirth education grounded in reproductive justice. 

When should I start antenatal classes?

Ideally, you would start your antenatal classes in your second trimester, so from 28 weeks onwards. This means that here's enough time to consolidate your learning and put it into practice before having your baby and you won't have finished your classes too far in advance and have forgotten everything! If you're not sure which class date is best for you, send us an email and we are more than happy to help you.

What about my partner?

The cost of your class includes your partner or a support person! 

What about covid?

All following classes will take place in Tāmaki Makaurau,  in person, at The Village NZ.



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Every Tuesday evening for 6 consecutive weeks

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6.30 - 8.30pm

What's included in the price?

  • 6 weeks of antenatal classes during your pregnancy with a selection of tea, coffee and treats, based in central Auckland

  • 1 postnatal meet up where you get the opportunity to ask two registered midwives the questions keeping you up at night, practical parenting tips and hands on breast/chestfeeding support

  • Your own hard copy of the pregnancy resource

  • Free digital download of Earthside: birth stories from Aotearoa

  • Birth affirmations, breathing techniques and more

  • An EMPWR goodie bag from trusted kiwi brands

This was a highly informative class. Lou and Arlene covered all the basics of a traditional antenatal class as well as many other topics that wouldn't normally be covered. They were extremely responsive and spent a long time answering questions and tailoring the classes to our specific needs and requests. One does not have to be a member of the LGBTQIA+ community to benefit from this class, as it was designed to be open to all parenting styles. We also enjoyed Lou's extreme commitment to science based advice and the many studies they seemed to be able to quote on the spot.