Keeping The Dream Alive
Ms. Dionie Reyes
2011 Outstanding Midwife of the Philippines
Santiago City, Isabela
Life’s twists and turns has never diminished Ms. Dionie Reyes’ dream to become a professional midwife. Every part of her journey has been worthwhile, and has prepared her to serve mothers and their children to the best of her abilities.
Nine siblings and a difficult life motivated Ms. Dionie Reyes to take advantage of every opportunity that came her way. Although she became a midwife in 1981, she was not able to practice her profession right away. To help her family, she decided to work in Bahrain in a household for three years, from 1982 to 1985. When she returned home, she took a job as a salesperson for six months and then volunteered at a hospital for three months.
She joined the former Flores Memorial Hospital and worked there as a midwife until 1992. Another opportunity came from the academe. She accepted the role of clinical coordinator at the University of La Salette and served for eight years. She also taught part-time classes before transferring to Northeastern College as a clinical instructor.
However, Ms. Reyes admits, “Kakambal na ng buhay ko ang profession ko (My life cannot be separated from my profession).” In 2004, she served as Regional President of the Integrated Midwives Association of the Philippines (IMAP). Six years later, she became training coordinator of IMAP Region 2, and took charge of helping midwives develop their skills and competencies. “Midwives must be on top of developments in their field. We have to keep up,” Ms. Reyes said.
Coming full circle
A major turning point came in January 2011, when she was ready to leave the academe and focus on serving as a midwife. She felt this was the opportunity to devote herself to her own birthing facility. She established Psalm 23 Birthing Home Clinic, which received one of the first licenses to operate in their area. It was also in 2011 that she was honored as Outstanding Midwife of the Philippines.
When it comes to leadership, Ms. Reyes is a moral force. “As a leader, it is important to be firm and to assert yourself, but I always consult people before I make major decisions. I also see to it that we carry out what has been decided.”
Her patients keep her busy these days, but she is most happy doing what she loves. “We must listen to our patients so we can give the best care possible,” Ms. Reyes explained. “We try to make everyone feel welcome and leave with a good experience.”
Psalm 23 is celebrating its sixth anniversary in 2017, and they have become known for offering free clinic sessions and mother classes . “Dedication to your work means caring for your patients like you are never tired.” This same dedication allowed her to explore brave new paths, and to come full circle with her life’s dream guiding her. As the first verse of Psalm 23 boldly proclaims: “The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want...”