YANAM2M (You Are Not Alone – Mom 2 Mom) has been a Colorado 501(c)(3) nonprofit since April of 2017 as a community outreach program to help make sure moms understand that they are not alone and that they ARE enough. After two moms from our community took their lives and the lives of their kiddos (in 11-2016 and 2-2017), a group of us decided it was time to be sure no mom felt this was the only way to solve their problems. We have saved lives and made a difference in many families but we have found that trying to get ahead of Postpartum Depression is a never-ending battle. We have created a new program to help stop Postpartum Depression right from the beginning of motherhood.
In Colorado, the hospitals do not have a support system built into their postpartum services. As a state with a very large population of transplants, our new moms often feel alone and suffer from severe Postpartum Depression due to isolation and a lack of connection with peers. Our program will give ALL moms the opportunity to connect with other moms going through the same struggles of new motherhood and build a “tribe” so that isolation and feelings of inadequacy will be greatly diminished or even eliminated. Strong Mamas, Thriving Babies will consist of:
Our program will group moms together who gave birth within the same month. For example, all moms who give birth in the month of March will come back to the hospital to a warm, inviting setting once a week for the four weeks of April. Each of the four gatherings will be a time for moms to connect with other moms going through the same challenges. This comradery is something so many moms are missing in motherhood and with it, the fear of isolation will dissipate and give new moms the opportunity to connect on a whole different level. Two big factors of Postpartum Depression are isolation and the feeling of inadequacy. This program will support moms so that they aren’t left to spiral into depression that sometimes leads to suicide and homicide.
The second aspect of our program is an online piece so that all moms can communicate over a YANA-specific APP. This APP is currently in production and will create an online community of vetted moms where they can chat, plan playdates, discuss parenting topics, and have their own community of fellow moms. This APP will change how moms communicate and give them a platform to just be themselves.
The third aspect of our program is a mental health personal check-in with each mom. Every mom who is a participant of the program will receive a 3, 6, 9 and 12-month postpartum phone call to check-in. This phone call will simply be a way to keep in touch with each mom and to make sure their mental health is being addressed. The caller will simply be checking in with each mom to offer resources and support. We want to ensure that every mom understands that they are not alone.
We know that our proposed program will save lives and will improve the mental health of our communities because we all know that the mental health of moms is crucial to the survival of our society as a whole. When mom is not healthy, everything falls apart! Let’s keep moms healthy and give them the support they deserve. With grant funding, we can begin this important, essential work.