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Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Laveen Mother Organization Helping New Moms

Many couples struggle for years before being able to become parents. There are the emotions, the hope and the disillusion. Then, you find out you are pregnant and realize you are giving life–it’s such a miracle and it’s happening to you.


But, the reality of being a parent often arrives with the baby nine months later when the hardships of balancing a job, the marriage, household chores, and the baby get a little challenging.


But South Mountain District resident Tessa Stotts is aiming to help new mothers meet these new responsibilities by coordinating Mothers of Pre-Schoolers, or Mops, a twice-monthly support group in Laveen.


“I would say it’s very challenging,” said Stotts of motherhood. “Preparing a simple meal can sometimes be challenging.”


It’s in this crucial stage of multi-tasking where friendships and some “free” time become part of the light at the end of the tunnel for some mothers. 


“Sometimes, you just need a break and this group provides that break,” said Stotts, herself a mother of a six- and four-year-old.  She organized MOPS a little more than two years ago after moving to Laveen.  A group of 34 mothers meets twice a month at the Laveen Baptist Church while their children, ranging from infants to toddlers, are cared for by church volunteers.


“The reason why I think it’s an important organization is that every woman who becomes a mom needs a support group or friends to ask about mothering. We have free childcare while you get to sit with other women who are facing the same challenges that you are,” said Stotts. 


Jhoanna Molina, one of the 34 mothers in the group said the most beneficial part of the two-hour, semi-monthly reunion is the guest speakers. 


“I love, love, the fact that they have guest speakers. One guest speaker who stuck out in my mind was a woman who talked about having and creating a thankful heart. I also like the fact its Christian based and it nourishes my beliefs,” said the 33 year-old Molina who is a stay-at-home mom caring for her two-year-old.  MOPS’s speakers range from all types of aspects. Recent topics have included how to be a practical mother , car-seat safety tips, easy and quick recipes and support at home for marriage. 


One of the group’s community services includes providing hot meals to new mothers in the area.  The group is lead by a Mentor Mom—an experienced mother who provides guidance for the group.  The kids are cared for by MOPETS, church members who volunteer their time to crafting, singing songs, reading, coloring, exercising and providing educational material to the kids. 


Molina and Stotts both agree that  the friendships created through MOPS  are another key reason for being part of the group.  Molina said she is coming up on her second year attending the group and said she has no plans to leave any time soon.


“This month’s meeting was about preparing for the holiday season and avoiding last minute hassles. I got some good words of advice from the other mothers,” she added.


Stotts credits the group for one of the reasons why she likes the Laveen community so much.  “It’s been wonderful to move here two years ago and I have a great group of friends who are mothers.  Sometimes it’s difficult to find friends and mothers and this is an easy way of doing that,” she said.


The Laveen MOPS group meets the first and third Thursday of every month from 9:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m at the Laveen Baptist Church, 5036 W. Dobbins Road.  There are MOPS groups all over the United States and in 29 different countries.  If you would like more information about the Laveen MOPS group please contact Tessa Stotts at tastotts@hotmail.com or at 602-276-6184 or at www.mops.org  The annual membership fee is $20, which includes childcare.






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