My name is Ciru Ciera and am a career nurse. I have a Bachelor’s of Science Degree in Nursing and a Master’s in Public Health. I am also a certified Labour Support Specialist (Doula), Lactation Educator and a Child Birth educator with Lamaze international through Elizabeth Project International. I used to get so many questions from friends and acquaintances about pregnancy, their newborns, if a certain medication was safe to use in pregnancy or breastfeeding, etc. And I finally got the idea to turn all this into a business that would focus on educating new mums and soon to be mums and their partners. I realized that pregnant women are so overwhelmed with information. They are filled with fear and anxiety about what to expect and what may go wrong and do not really have a safe space to share this and actually get an expert response. This is how my business Nurturing Moms was born in 2014.
Nurturing Moms provides clarity by supporting, educating and empowering women from 28 weeks of pregnancy and their families. We provide child birth classes (Lamaze), breastfeeding preparation classes, lactation specialty services, baby sleep routine assessment and complementary feeding.
The Highs and Lows
The memorable moments in my business have been many. Oh my goodness!! I can’t believe how far I have come. From being in a place wondering what my purpose in this life is and why God really put me here, to getting to a point of knowing full well what my calling and purpose is! I am so proud of myself for choosing a space that only doctors venture. Joining in as an authority in this space of Maternal and Child health has been truly fulfilling.
When mums write to me or call and tell me that choosing me was the best decision they ever made. In such moments it makes it all worth it. Including when I support a mother in labour and she has the type of birth experience she wanted or envisioned. Or when I support a mother with breastfeeding challenges on the verge of quitting then she learns the correct breastfeeding technique and loves breastfeeding without any discomfort or pain. These are some of the things that make it all worth it. On the other hand, like with any business I have experienced lows as well. This includes when I work beside a mother and she loses her baby. It’s heart-breaking.
As an entrepreneur, I know it’s important to have support. Like having a Life Coach. For me having a life coach means I have someone I can talk to and share some of my experiences, feelings and work through some things I have be avoiding. It has helped me grow in many ways.
The lessons I have learnt when it comes to running a business in unprecedented times like this is that an entrepreneur needs to be flexible and be able to diversify. Technology cannot be ignored. Social media has really helped in continuing to create and awareness and connect with mums and dads.
In the case of my business “Nurturing Moms” not all sessions have to be in person. Virtual platforms have really helped ensure that the couples feel safe but still get my support virtually in the comfort of their homes. It has also opened access to those who are out of Nairobi and could not access my services due to distance. I have been offering online Childbirth Classes since March of 2020.
Before I started my business, I was among those who felt social media was a waste of time. However, I soon realized that if I want to be seen and be on the minds of my target market, I need to be visible on social media. It has been great. I recently started venturing into Reels. Lol!… I am still learning but it has be so much fun educating in a 15 second or 30 second reel. Such a unique way to educate the public without doing 20 minute videos or writing an entire article about it!
Indeed, learning never stops and I continue to push myself to learn new things and I am currently back in school.
As I wind up, what are the top business tips that have worked for me that I can share with women in business?
- Believe in your vision.
- Stay true to your brand. My business is an extension of me. I stay authentic.
- Offer Value and do not be apologetic for charging a premium.
- Get onto social media and showcase your business.
- And finally, find a coach. Life Coach or Business Coach. A Life Coach can be instrumental in helping you create an actionable plan to achieve your life goals. By guiding you to identify your strengths to live a fuller, meaningful life that empowers you. It is of great importance for an entrepreneur to know their worth – and oh yes! don’t be afraid to charge premium.
Click to check out and find out more about Nurturing Moms
This story has been sponsored by HerVenture in Celebration of World SME Day 2021. HerVenture is the Cherie Blair Foundation for Women’s mobile learning app. It provides women entrepreneurs of small and growing businesses with the knowledge, skills and confidence needed to successfully grow their enterprises. (Download the app and stand a chance to win a Ksh. 10,000 Shopping Voucher . Go to the Supamamas Facebook Page to participate.