This project is the first building block of our bigger vision to create a city village where everyone in our community works together to identify and address the biggest risks to children's health and education from cradle to career.
Who are we?We are a group of mums from all over the world and all different backgrounds living in Camberwell and Walworth who come together to support each other in one of the most special but most challenging times in our lives. In our community many mothers face serious challenges to their wellbeing and this has an impact on their babies. So we decided to do something about it...
our storyTwo years ago we started a project in our community with local community leaders and psychologists from the Institute of Psychiatry, to look into what was lacking for mothers in our community. We knew this was important because the latest scientific evidence shows that if mothers are not happy and supported then this can have serious consequences for babies.
In Southwark this is a problem - lots of mothers are new to the area or even the country, and don't always have a support network. To add to this, lots of families are living in poverty. The data says it all - infant mortality in Southwark is high and many babies are born underweight which is an indicator associated with deprivation.
Back in 2013 we decided to take action and we set up MumSpace. MumSpace is a parent led support group for mothers all in the same boat. We reduce social isolation by providing women with an essential network of support. It is a place where they can find out information about parenting, services in their area such as children's centres and other practical factors that impact on family life such as housing and employment. We create a non-judgemental space where the focus is on sharing real life experiences.
We don’t just see women that come to MumSpace as users, but also as leaders. Many of our mums play a crucial role in leading the group and also taking action to campaign on issues that negatively impact on family life in our community.
So remember the psychologists we told you about the start? Well they have studied the impact of MumSpace and have they found that it is really good news for mother's wellbeing - which means it is really good news for babies.
Where will the money go?
In order to grow we need your support. We want to be able to increase the
number of MumSpace Hubs and build our community network, provide more one to one support and even test out some nifty ideas we've got like linking up with GP surgeries, starting a monthly young and old tea party with a local old age home and supporting mother's to find employment.
Basically more MumSpace Hubs = more mother's and babies benefitting.
But we need your help to do this.
We will spend your hard earned donations on employing part time parent organisers to help find and support the volunteers needed to sustain MumSpace sessions and to get all the projects we described above off the ground. Our priority is staff time because MumSpace has been built on relationships and will only grow if we have staff to maintain them. For example because our community is invested in MumSpace we have low running costs, but we do need to employ people to sustain this network. If we raise more than our target (you can make this happen!) then we will increase the capacity of our parent organisers. This will ensure that the MumSpace Hubs can grow and more mother's can participate.
For those of you that do decide to give we have some gifts to say thanks.
Find us here
Help us succeed!You don't need to give money to help us succeed! Please share this project with anyone you think would support us – on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, by email, telephone, in a chat over the fence or on your blog. In fact, share it with everyone you know as we think it's a great idea, and the more people who know about it, the more likely we are to make this work out brilliantly.
And we know we said you don't need to give money to help us, but we'd love it if you did! Please sponsor us and help make this happen.