FULL STEAM AHEAD: At the Sunshine Coast Multiple Birth Association family day at the mini trains in Nambour are (from left) Scott and twins Alexis and Taylah Jarrett, 4.
FULL STEAM AHEAD: At the Sunshine Coast Multiple Birth Association family day at the mini trains in Nambour are (from left) Scott and twins Alexis and Taylah Jarrett, 4. CHE CHAPMAN

Multiple reasons for happy families

LIFE with twins and triplets has been made easier over the years, thanks to the long-established Sunshine Coast Multiple Birth Association.

SCMBA is a not-for-profit organisation, run by and for families of multiple births, that has offered its support and collective knowledge to Sunshine Coast and Cooloola families since 1982.

During this time, the group has helped more than 1000 families along their journey of parenting multiple-birth children and their siblings, as well as organise social outings.

President Rachel Brook said SCMBA, which is affiliated with the national Australian Multiple Birth Association, had more than 60 members at the moment, welcoming 20 new member families in 2015.

"There is strong evidence that being supported by an organisation such as SCMBA and being surrounded by people who have been through something similar can make these processes easier for our multiple-birth families," she said.

"Through our regular playgroup and family events, our multiple-birth families can spend time with other families and, in turn, increase their support network.

"This year, our club will be hosting the annual state seminar for AMBA Queensland on May 28 and 29.

"Approximately 45-50 member representatives from all over Queensland will converge on the Sunshine Coast to discuss club activities and to hear inspiring and practical information from a variety of presenters and professionals.

"This information is then taken back to the 11 clubs across Queensland that represent approximately 830 families."

Rachel said SCMBA was there for families through good times and bad.

"Australian Multiple Birth Association as a whole focuses strongly on supporting families through difficult times such as long NICU (Neonatal Intensive Care Units) stays, postnatal depression, loss and special needs," she said.

"According to the Miracle Baby Foundation, in 2012, premature births occurred in 60.8% of twins and 94.8% of higher order multiples (triplets or more).

"These statistics mean that many of our multiple families have endured their babies spending time in special care nurseries or neonatal intensive care units.

"This can be an emotionally and physically exhausting time for families. As a result, the likelihood of postnatal depression is further increased, in addition to the already increased risk of PND in women who have had a multiple birth."

SCMBA is seeking financial sponsorship, raffle prizes and samples for goodie bags for all the state seminar attendees. If you can help, contact Rachel at scmba@

live.com.auYou can read more about both SCMBA and AMBA on the respective websites: http://www.scmba.org.au and http://www.amba.org.au.