JENNINGS, La (KLFY)– Ochsner American Legion Hospital in Jennings has created a program to assist new mothers in developing their baby’s brains.

The new ‘brain bags’ program is a way mothers giving birth at Ochsner’s American Legion Hospital can feel better about the development of their baby.

Mindy Hertzel says the program has been in the works for the past year and she’s excited to be able to help mothers.

“It took us approximately a year, so we started working on it in 2022 at the beginning of that year. We raised funds throughout the last year, and we gave our first brain bag to the first baby born in 2023.”

The brain bag has reading material for moms on how to aid in development as well as what to look for in their baby’s milestones.

Harley Landry, an OB and nurse manager says the importance of the bag is to make sure mothers are aware of what to expect and to prepare for life after the baby comes.

“The brain bag is so important for moms throughout their prenatal and postnatal care because during prenatal they are taking in that information and have time to absorb some of that before the baby arrives. and then postnatal it’s important for them as well because the baby is actually here and now they get to input some of that education that they’ve received into practice.”

She said the brain bag provides a wonderful opportunity to open up a conversation with new moms about the importance of being engaged.

The program’s goal is not only equipping mothers to engage in their baby’s development, but to ultimately build a better community.

“And we want to promote that because if we can build that brain then we can build that child’s life and in turn we build our community.”