The mission of the OmMama Resource Center is to improve the health and wellbeing of childbearing families through fitness, education, social support, and community engagement.
It’s been a while since you’ve heard from our fledgling non-profit, the OmMama Resource Center. We’re still kicking. In fact, we’re wiggling and stretching our limbs quite a bit in directions both practiced and new. On the eve of Thanksgiving, I’m excited to fill you in on what we’ve been up to since my last OmMama Resource Center post in May. I’ll begin with the exciting news first:
OmMama | The Movie
Lincoln is not the only movie debuting in Richmond this month! In June, we received a most generous offer from Mark Meyers, of Trademarky Films, to create a film about our goal of creating a dedicated maternity resource center. We spent two days filming fourteen interviews with OmMama students, board members, and health care professionals in the Richmond area. What is represented here is only a small part of the footage. We are extremely grateful to all who participated, and to the film crew for their professionalism and sensitivity in filming what were at times deeply emotional interviews. In the months to come, we hope to round out the footage to tell the story of what women in Richmond want and need during pregnancy, birth, and the early parenting period. Check it out and let us know what you think!
Emerging Nonprofit Leaders Program
I (Leslie) was accepted into the Emerging Nonprofit Leaders Program in September, and will be joining other emerging non-profit leaders in Richmond in a dynamic eight month long program designed to help develop and polish our leadership skills. The caliber of the programming is outstanding and I am thrilled to be spending time with folks of such talent and depth between now and next June. The perpetual student in me is ecstatic.
VCU Brand Center
We’ve also had the good fortune of being chosen by the VCU Brand Center as a case study for its Strategic Planning class. Students from this class will review the work the OmMama Resource Center has done and conduct an analysis of local stakeholders, opportunities, threats, and conditions, to help us strategically position ourselves within the community. We are thrilled for this opportunity and grateful to Sarah Trickey and her students for taking this project on. Teams from this class will present their final reports on December 10th, just in time for the holidays!
Ant work is the quiet, patient, underground effort of creating structure, and that is what our board is doing right now. It may not seem terribly exciting, and usually involves hours of research, reflection, writing, discussion, and revision. It’s the kind of work that doesn’t show on the surface, but has a profound impact on outcome – because a strong foundation is essential when you’re trying to take flight with an intention as big as improving the local ecology of pregnancy, birth and early parenting.
Our goal is to create a healthy organization from the ground up – a healthy nest or hive for our childbearing community. We want an organization that values the contributions of its members and rewards its staff with compensation commensurate with skill and experience. And that’s a bit of a challenge in that the programs we propose to offer – fitness, education, and social support for childbearing women and families – are generally not covered within our current health care system. Even though programs such as these contribute to substantial, measurable improvements in maternal/infant outcomes.
Our present task, then, is to build the infrastructure and obtain the funds needed necessary to offer programming on a scale that can change the ground game for pregnancy and birth in Richmond. We are short on money, tight on time, big on passion and talent, and have amazing connections in the community. And that’s our critical step next step: to strategically leverage passion, talent, and resources into simple, operational steps toward a healthy, self-sustaining organization. That’s the invisible, quiet, work of our board. And we are loving it.
Board members Leslie Lytle and Julie Sanders, who was expecting a baby in October and getting as much work in as she could before going out on maternity leave, spent the summer and early fall taking classes through the Non-Profit Learning Point in subjects such as: Grant writing, Strategic Partnerships, Managing Your Financial Picture, Marketing to Raise Funds, and Special Events, and Nonprofit Law, Ethics, and Advocacy – you get the idea. Each time we used our homework assignments to develop ideas, potential projects, and systems for the OmMama Resource Center, and benefited by having these reviewed by the outstanding instructors of the Nonprofit Learning Point. Richmond is truly blessed with the level of support and resources that are available to our nonprofit community. We as a board will continue to take advantages of educational opportunities as we move forward.
As we move from a start-up to a more structured organization, we created committees at our last board meeting. We now have official Programs, Marketing, Donor Relations, Board Development/Governance, Finance, and Strategic Planning. We’ve begun to seek volunteers with talent in the areas above to serve on these committees (see the list at the end of this post for our most immediate needs), and are thrilled at the response we’ve had so far. If you would like to volunteer for one of our committees, please send your resume and area of interest or expertise to info@OmMama.com.
So as you can see, the ants have been busy – and we’ve had a lot of helpers. And though we may not be loud, we’re very, very persistent. We invite you to become a part of this revolutionary project. Your skills and talents can greatly benefit the OmMama Resource Center, and move us closer to our vision of creating a dedicated maternity resource center in Richmond.
Currently we are looking for expertise and interest in the following areas:
- CPA or Accountant – We would love to have a CPA or accountant assist our Finance Committee with structuring and fine-tuning our budgets. Anticipated initial commitment – 4 – 6 hours.
- Social Media Expert– we’re looking for someone with social media and/or PR expertise to serve on our Marketing Committee
Be our eyes:
- Donated or Low-cost Space for Classes: We’re seeking temporary quarters to begin holding prenatal yoga and childbirth education classes – approximately 700 – 1000 sq. ft., of studio space within the City of Richmond with room to store props. Initially we’re looking for 1 – 2 nights of use, and some morning times as well. If you know of space that might be rented or donated to the OmMama Resource Center, please contact us at info@OmMama.com and we’ll follow up!
Gifts: Donations may be sent to:
The OmMama Resource Center
PO Box 7109
Richmond, VA 23221
We have applied for but not yet received our 501c3 tax-exempt status. Once that is received, donations will be tax deductible retroactively back to our incorporation date of April 5th 2012.
We are grateful for your continued support.
Happy Thanksgiving! Look to hear more from us after the New Year!The OmMama Resource Center Founding Board of Directors
Update: Since this post, The OmMama Resource Center has changed its name to Nurture. Please visit us at our new website: www.NurtureRVA.org.