About Us


Noreen Walker, RM

Noreen Walker, RM 1949-2017

Passages Midwifery is the midwifery practice founded by Noreen Walker, RM. Noreen was a pioneer of the midwifery community in Alberta, who had practiced over 40 years and welcomed thousands of babies into this world. Her firm belief that every family is capable of achieving their own safe and perfect birth experience is the core principle of all the midwives of Passages. Regardless of culture, sexual orientation, weight, or previous birth history, what matters is that you are empowered to design your own experience. The loss of Noreen will be felt forever; however, we are determined that her philosophy will live on through the midwives of our practice and the women that we serve.

To apply for care, please send a blank email to info@passagesmidwifery.com. You will be sent an automatic response with instructions on how to register.

Jenni Cruse, RM

Jenni Cruse, RM

Pregnancy and birth has resonated with me since I attended my first birth 17 years ago. This led me to train as a doula and later as a nurse. I worked in the delivery suite of a busy women’s hospital which soon had me noticing that the hospital environment didn’t sit well with my views and values around birth.

This realization was pivotal in my path to becoming a midwife. This path has led me on a wonderful journey across the beautiful south pacific to New Zealand where I completed my midwifery degree. I then began my practice as a homebirth midwife in a very isolated part of New Zealand; which often meant leaving the hospital behind in a remote 1-2 hour drive from where women were home birthing. The women in this area were inspirational with an inherent trust in their bodies and the process of birth. As a midwife in the region, I was in a unique position to support women at home who chose vaginal birth after caesarean (VBAC), vaginal breech birth and women who chose to have no medical intervention or ultrasound throughout their pregnancy.

I believe that pregnancy and birth is a sacred time for women and their families. I am grateful to be working in partnership with Noreen and I look forward to supporting women during their remarkable journey of pregnancy and birth here in Edmonton.

Heather Martin, RM, MN

Heather Martin, RM, MN

 

Heather hails from Regina, Saskatchewan where her passion for maternity care was ignited after visiting a friend with her new baby.  She began her nursing education in 1999, qualifying for the Accelerated Nursing Education Program of Saskatchewan. She graduated in 2002 and began working in a labour and delivery unit.  She also spent one year working full time in a tertiary level NICU.

It was Heather’s zest for learning, and a sense that she needed a change, that brought her to Edmonton to pursue her Masters in Nursing at the University of Alberta. Heather had developed a passion for global maternal health and had the unique opportunity to conduct her thesis research in Ghana, Africa, studying community support for childbearing women. Through her studies, Heather learned more about midwifery and a new fire was lit.

In 2011, Heather was accepted to Laurentian University’s Midwifery Education Program. She benefitted enormously from the wonderful women in South Western Ontario who allowed her to be involved in their care and, of course, from the midwives whose experience and confidence in birth allowed her to learn, grow, and truly become a midwife.

Heather completed her Bachelor of Health Sciences Degree in Midwifery, Cum Laude, in the spring of 2013 and returned to Edmonton to begin her new career at JoySring Midwifery. Working alongside childbearing women and their families through JoySpring was an absolute pleasure.  

After the passing of Noreen Walker in the spring of 2017, Heather was compelled to help Passages Midwifery continue to provide care to the thousands of families who Noreen had dedicated her life to. It is an honour for Heather to be walking in the footsteps laid by such an inspiring and strong woman.  

When not busy catching babies, Heather has contributed to provincial midwifery as Vice President of the Alberta Association of Midwives, midwife-member of the MoreOB Core Team at Royal Alexandra Hospital in Edmonton, and data collection for a study led by Dr. Beverly O’Brien on water immersion in labour and birth. Once in a while spare time and adventure find a happy mix, providing Heather with important opportunities to present at such events as the International Confederation of Midwives Conference in Prague, Czechoslovakia (June 2014), the CAPWHN Conference in Regina (2014), and the POGO Conference in Regina (2016). Heather participates as a member of the Provincial Midwifery Executive Committee for Alberta Health Services and in September 2016, she assumed the role of Clinical Midwifery Director for the Edmonton, Central, and North Zone.

Heather enjoys traveling, her two rambunctious kitties, relaxing with family and friends, preparing great meals, and crocheting beautiful newborn hats for the sweet little babies she helps to welcome into the world.

Melanna Mamo, RM

Melanna Mamo, RM

Midwifery has meant more to me than a job or career, it is one of my life’s passions. I attended my first birth at 13 years old, and felt an intuitive connection to the process of pregnancy and childbirth. Throughout my young life I had a clear focus on getting into midwifery school, and in 2011 I joined the first class of Mount Royal University B. Midwifery students in Calgary.

When I was a second year student I felt pretty lucky to join Noreen Walker here at Passages for a semester of placement. That experience opened my eyes to how midwifery could be practiced from the heart, and how to trust birth and women’s bodies.

After I graduated, I moved to east Vancouver to work in a very busy practice, but missed Alberta very much. I was beyond excited when Noreen offered me a place in her practice, and the opportunity to once again call Edmonton home!

In addition to my work as a midwife I am a lover of good food, time outside, laughs with friends and adventure.

I so look forward to meeting you and your family on this amazing journey.

Samatha Stupak, RM

Samatha Stupak, RM

 

The first time I heard about midwifery was when I was in high school and my cousin told me that she was planning a home birth in our home town of Winnipeg. I immediately became intrigued (and obsessed) with birth. I couldn’t explain it, but I just knew in my heart that there was nothing else I could do with my life. My idea of midwifery was so grand and perfect that I never thought it could live up to all that it was in my head and heart. As I entered my first midwifery placements, caught my first babies, and eventually started caring for my own clients, the realization set in that birth and caring for families was even better than I ever imagined it could be. I love being a midwife. Every part of this job is so important to me – helping families make decisions, watching the birth process unfold in its natural power, creating successful breastfeeding relationships, watching babies grow. My philosophy as a midwife is grounded in informed choice and helping families make decisions that feel as right to them as being a midwife felt to me. I am especially passionate about caring for young families, first time parents, and people who have previously given birth by caesarean. I believe that families have the ability to be empowered and responsible for their pregnancies, births, and parenting and I am thrilled that I get to spend every day witnessing this all unfold for each family.

 

Prior to being a midwife, I was a social worker in the inner city of Edmonton and have continued to be involved with activist work in my community. I love camping & hiking with my husband, cooking healthy veggie food, reading about Indigenous culture and history, and taking my dog Jade for long walks.

Katherine Walker, Practice Owner and Doula

With the loss of my mother, Noreen, it fell to me to ensure that her practice continued and flourished even in her absence. It was our dream that one day, we would practice together; Noreen was my mentor and guide as I journeyed through midwifery school. I have attended over 100 births, many with Noreen, and many with amazing midwives from across Canada and the United States. Until I am registered, I cannot practice midwifery in Alberta; however, I am available as a doula for labour and postpartum support. Along with this, I can help you visualize and achieve your perfect birth, help you understand your doctor’s or midwife’s advice, and help you access other needed support services in our community. For inquiries, please email me at katherine@passagesmidwifery.com.