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Mums4Mums recently expanded their services to support mums and babies in Rotorua

    Story by Mums4Mums

    Do you remember the first day of starting a new job or a new school? It was a bit nerve racking and maybe exciting at the same time. The same can be true when one becomes a new parent but especially a new mother. The difference is with a new job or time at school you get to go home and relax and get a break. Not the case with being a new mum or parent. It’s a 24-hours a day commitment from endless crying, sleepless nights, changing nappies, possible aches from breastfeeding, time to recover from a C-sction or a birthing trauma, etc. it is not always the beautiful fairy tale we have been told it is.

    For some mums the transition into motherhood (also known as matrescence) can be a daunting one. With physical, emotional, social, and identity changes to name a few. Your whole life changes instantly. Matrescence is the process of becoming a mother and it can be even more of a rollercoaster ride than our adolescence and can last a lot longer.

    As anyone would testify, finding that new friendly colleague or classmate to help you ease into your new role can make the transition less scary and more successful the same can be true when mum has someone there to support her in the transition into motherhood.

    That’s where the newly awarded “Heart of the Community” recipient for 2024 of the Western Bay Community Awards, Mums4Mums Charitable Trust is able to support. They are experts in supporting mothers through the matrescence phase. And are supporting mums and babies for the best possible outcomes.  “Our team and volunteers are working primarily with mum and baby but supporting the whole whanau is what is important, says Founder and CEO, CJ Dafoe. The old saying it takes a village to raise a child is even more true today than it was a century ago. We may feel more connected due to technology, but socially we are more disconnected than we have ever been before. In New Zealand we have the worst track record amongst our OECD counterparts for maternal mental health, in fact in New Zealand we have a maternal mental health crisis. It’s the elephant in the intersections no one is brave enough to talk about.”

    Mums4Mums recently expanded their services to support mums and babies in Rotorua and surrounding area as of January 2024 and started accepting referrals since February 2024 and are busy recruiting and onboarding loving and caring mums and grandmothers to support a mum in need. The commitment is typically just one visit a week for 2-hours over a 12-week period and then it can be extended if needed.

    “Some mums will need one volunteer visiting once a week or they may need the support of two or three who visit more frequently during the week. Each mum’s situation is unique, and we cater to her specific needs and family situation as best we can, says Sarah McAlpine who is the Regional Coordinator for the area.

    “Mums love and want to do the very best they can but sometimes they feel like they are in the deep end of the pool and the waves are too crushing to stay above water. By matching them to an experienced and caring mum or grandmother we are creating an extended whanau, often improving confidence and competence, and always providing a safe, loving and caring support team around them. They are no longer alone and that on its own emotionally can be the most important contribution we make.”

    We wish to thank our founding supporters COGS, Geyser Foundation and Rotorua Trust for their amazing support. It is incredibly appreciative and valuable.

    To find out more about how you can either become a volunteer or donate to support the important mahi of Mums4Mums please check out their website at Referrals are accepted through Te Whatu Ora, Plunket, local GPS, midwives, Family Start, Maternal Mental Health or counsellor.