Thankful For Receiving A CREB Investing In Hope Grant

Thankful For Receiving A CREB Investing In Hope Grant

i Sep 27th No Comments by

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Made by Momma was honoured and ecstatic to be among the top 3 charities chosen by the CREB Charitable Foundation to receive an Investing in Hope grant. It was an extremely tough competition this year with an extensive application and vetting process. Made by Momma was among major inspiration and really felt like “the new kid on the block” making the top 3 with established charities Inn From the Cold and Kids Cancer Care Foundation of Alberta. What a feat for us at only 7 years old!! We came in third and were awarded a grant of $75,000!!! This money goes directly to supporting our clients to help with food security and baby essentials.

Investing in HOPE provides one-time grants to shelter and community-related non-profit organizations in Calgary and its surrounding area. In conjunction with monetary donations from the program, the foundation’s philanthropy is also measured in volunteer hours from CREB® Realtor members.

Made by Momma is so thankful to donors, sponsors, and Realtor members who made this possible for us and gave us their votes throughout the process. Also, a special thank you to Realtors Linda Crnkovic and Dan Stante for nominating and supporting us!!

Our 2016 Annual Report!

i Sep 26th No Comments by

Thank you to everyone who helped make 2016 an amazing year!

2016 was another incredibly busy year for our Made by Momma team! We experienced growth in many ways.  We helped over 300 more families in 2016 than the previous year, our NICU Family Meals program has become fully integrated into the PLC and SHC hospital’s Neonatal and Intensive Care Units and The Happy Birthday Project hit the ground running, providing over 1000 birthday party packages to kids who would otherwise go without a celebration.  We also had plenty of opportunities for community engagement and sharing our message.

We would like to take this opportunity to share this message with you through our 2016 MBM Annual Report which summarizes the year we had.  The statistics presented in this report are incredible and show all the details regarding how we assist a family in Calgary during their time of crisis and adversity.

On behalf of our Made by Momma Board of Directors, we would like to thank all of our fantastic supporters and our amazing volunteers who rose to the challenges we were presented. We know it take a village to make a difference and we are so grateful that you are a part of our village.

If you’re interested in learning more or getting involved with Made by Momma please check out our Volunteering page for additional information.

CREB Investing in HOPE

i Aug 24th No Comments by

Calling all YYC Realtors & CREBNow Members! 

We are so grateful to have been nominated, and SO excited to be in the final 3 for the 2017 #CREB #InvestingInHope campaign. This is an amazing opportunity to win much needed funding for our volunteer-run charity from the CREB Charitable Foundation!

Please help us provide wholesome nourishment, nurturing care and HOPE for families in crisis.

Voting is now OPEN and ends September 1st, 2017.

Vote Here: http://www.creb.com/InvestingInHope/Nominees/Made_by_Momma/

This campaign is open to CREB (Calgary Real Estate Board) members and Friends of the Foundation!

Not a member of CREB but still want to help us? Please call, email & encourage your favorite Realtor to vote for MADE BY MOMMA!

#InvestinginHOPE #CREB #YYC #ItTakesAVillage #MadebyMomma #yycre #crebnow #realtors

THANK YOU! 

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Celebrating Canada 150 With a Block Party!

i Jun 18th No Comments by

ND 2017

What a day to celebrate being a Calgarian by getting to know our neighbours and supporters!

The event began with set up bright and early at 8am! Putting up tents and displaying the bake sale items.  Setting up tables and chairs and tidying around the Resource Centre so that our neighbours and friends could come in and have a look at our brand new kitchen.

Then, the DJ set up his station and once the ponies and Butterfield Acre’s petting zoo arrived we knew the party was going to be a hit!   The children enjoyed every moment.

Avatara Pizza served up hot and delicious pizzas for everyone with their food truck leaving smiles on everyone’s faces as they filled their bellies and partied on the block with their families.  The weather didn’t disappoint and the sun shined down making it a beautiful day for getting to know our neighbours and for our neighbours to get to know what we do here a Made by Momma.  The party continued with a palm reader, face painters, and henna tattoo artists as well as crafts and lots of delicious baked goodies for sale for a great cause: helping mums with small children who are experiencing a crisis in their lives.

Our sincerest thanks to the volunteers and the funding that made our party such a huge success.  Our Neighbour Day Block Party 2017 was made possible by the Community Fund for Canada’s 150th, a collaboration between Calgary Foundation, the Government of Canada, and extraordinary leaders from coast to coast to coast.

 

2017 Summer Student Interns

i May 15th No Comments by

2017 SUMMER STUDENT INTERNS

Looking for a summer job? Love giving back to the community? We’ve got exciting news! We’ve received another Canada Summer Jobs Program Grant to hire 3 fabulous Summer Students this year!

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As a volunteer-run organization, every aspect of what we do is done by volunteers….client intake, cooking & baking, updating the website, packing up baby essentials, answering emails, delivering meals, organizing donation drives, attending events…and everything in between!

The summer months can be a busy time for our organization so we’re looking forward to finding three dynamic students to help us run our Resource Centre. The positions open are: Resource Centre Coordinator, Community Kitchen Coordinator and The Happy Birthday Project Coordinator.

We’d love to find student that are taking non-profit studies, social work, nursing, child development, psychology, sociology, business, PR/Marketing, communications, culinary arts, and nutrition or dietitian studies to be a part of our team. These positions have been created for a student between 18 and 30 years old, who has been attending school full-time, and will be resuming classes in the fall.
Additional information on each available role can be found here:  2017 Summer Students Job Posting

These jobs will provide you with the opportunity to acquire skills, gain valuable work experience and help finance your return to school.

If you are passionate about the work our charity does and you’d like to apply for any of our positions, please get in touch with us!

2016 Summer Students

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This position is being supported by the Canada Summer Jobs Program/Service Canada
Eligible Student Participants: To be eligible to participate in the CSJ initiative, individuals must:
• be between 15 and 30 years of age at the start of the employment;
• have been registered as full-time students in the previous academic year and intend to return to school on a full-time basis in the next academic year;
• be a Canadian citizen, permanent resident, or person to whom refugee protection has been conferred under the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act3; and,
• be legally entitled to work in Canada in accordance with relevant provincial/territorial legislation and regulations.

It’s National Volunteer Week from April 23 – 29th 2017

i Apr 23rd No Comments by

National Volunteer Week April 23-29, 2017

THANK YOU TO OUR VOLUNTEERS!

Made by Momma would like to showcase some of our stellar volunteers who have committed themselves to the cause of creating a village for families in Calgary who are experiencing a period of crisis or adversity in their lives.  Whether’s it’s sorting through donations and inventory, gardening, data entry, bagging Cobs bread on a weekly basis, cooking wholesome and nourishing meals, or providing nurturing care to the families we support, these volunteers are the kind and loving people that make Made by Momma run efficiently!

 CASSANDRA AND ERNIE L.

“My dad and me both love volunteering for Made by Momma and couldn’t imagine working with better people.” Cassandra and Ernie L.

Cassandra and Ernie are a father daughter team that has shown immense dedication to volunteering with Made by Momma. Cassandra works as an office manager in a physiotherapist office during the day and Ernie works in sales. In their free time, other than Made by Momma, Cassandra loves scrapbooking and seeing movies and Ernie loves to read. They heard about Made by Momma from another MBM volunteer and decided to give it a try. Cassandra and Ernie have been volunteering for Made by Momma for over 2 years now. They have been dedicated volunteers of the weekly Cobs bread bagging crew and have shown up consistently almost every week since they began volunteering with us, “we both enjoy the bread bagging cause it is really a weekly social with other volunteers,” says Cassandra.   She and Ernie like volunteering for Made by Momma because they feel like it has such a positive impact on the community and the other volunteers are almost like part of their family. “We love the other volunteers we have met volunteering and couldn’t feel more blessed to have so many lovely people to work with.   Our friendship with some of the volunteers now has spilled over into our personal life,” says Cassandra.

When they aren’t bagging Cobs bread on Tuesday evenings, they are helping to sort clothing donations and bake cookies for Katie Fisher Day. They hope that volunteering with Made by Momma will continue to allow them to make new friends as well as give back to their community, “…because of non-profits like this, people that fall through the system have somewhere to go” says Cassandra.

In the future they would like to help with a fundraising event for Made by Momma, “My dad and me both love volunteering for Made by Momma and couldn’t imagine working with better people” says Cassandra. Ernie clearly remembers an especially touching moment that happened to him this year, “I helped a gentlemen out to his vehicle with a hamper and got a thank you hug.”

Made by Momma sends you both great big hugs, Cassandra and Ernie. We sincerely appreciate all that you do for us and applaud your dedication and friendly positive energy at Made by Momma. We value your contribution and are so grateful for your support.

SANDRA P.

“…I spent a lot of my childhood overseas moving around with my family and know how hard it is to feel supported away from home.   Being in a position to pay it forward now as an adult and be a small part of the support network for other people who are looking for a friendly face in a new environment is a great feeling.” Sandra P.

Sandra began volunteering with Made by Momma about one and a half years ago. She heard about us through a friend who had participated in a group cook with us and our organization really peaked her interest because it was geared towards cooking, baking and supporting families in crisis. In her own words, here is a little bit about our stellar volunteer Sandra P. and her contribution to Made by Momma:

I was initially drawn in because I love to bake, and in the future, I would love to participate in a group cook or do some in house baking for the group. I have brought cookies in for meals from home before though, helping me and helping others! I also responded to the message of helping others who might not have the family support as they go through changes or hardships in life, I spent a lot of my childhood overseas moving around with my family and know how hard it is to feel supported away from home. I have tried my hand at home visits, which was great as I love children, but my main focus is the meal packing. I started as a regular volunteer and have since started leading the sessions. It’s wonderful to spend a couple hours gathering amazing prepared food for a dozen families for the upcoming week. Being in a position to pay it forward now as an adult and be a small part of the support network for other people who are looking for a friendly face in a new environment is a great feeling.

MBM does so much! I didn’t realize the size of the organization and how much work goes into all the organizing, sorting, ordering etc. to make sure we are sending out the best products we can, to as many families as we can help. The most fantastic part of it all is that we are still 100% volunteer based! To accomplish so much through 100% community heart and spirit is a constant inspiration.

There are so many great things about MBM, one of the best is the people that are drawn to it. All the volunteers are amazing friendly kind people who I am always happy to spend an evening or a weekend with.

Living in Calgary it is a great opportunity to give back to your community; MBM started here in Calgary and has grown as an organization because of the local people who want to make a difference in someone’s life. You can be as involved as you want from a casual volunteer to a regular who cooks 100’s of servings of food a week. There is something for everyone.

MBM is there for people who are spending their time looking after others, their children. The old proverb “it takes a village to raise a child” is true, and to be able to offer the support needed to parents and families when they are in need is the most valuable contribution you can make. Whether a parent needs rest, support, help with the food or baby supplies we at MBM are here to help out in any way we can. Giving the parents and the children the best opportunity to be healthy, happy, and feel at home wherever they are, whatever the situation is.

I feel so lucky to have found this group, and to have this opportunity to help make people’s lives a little bit easier, a little bit better. The women and men who volunteer with MBM have open minds, bright hearts, and smiling faces and getting to hang out with them for a few hours a week is always something I look forward to.

We feel lucky to have found you Sandra! Thank you for your contribution and your commitment to helping create a village for families in Calgary who are facing a tough time. We sincerely appreciate everything you do!

CANDIS S.

“I feel that people should consider made by momma as an organization to volunteer with because there is something for everyone either on a regular basis or intermittent.” Candis S.  

Candis is a regular Wednesday morning volunteer. She enjoys cooking meals in the kitchen at the resource centre as well as managing the pick up of hampers by families all at the same time. One of Candis’ many strengths is that she can whip up meals from anything we have available at any given moment. She has a simple request – thaw some meat for her and she will be in to create some something special out of whatever ingredients we have that day. Candis describes her time with us in her own words:

I first heard about Made by Momma in the Calgary Herald when they were part of the Christmas fund over 4 years ago.  The story tugged at my heart for a variety of reasons.  I have experienced many of the situations that our families have; bedrest with a toddler at home, baby in the nicu, sick child in hospital.  I was fortunate enough to have family and friends for help but can appreciate that help is not there for everyone.  Also, my child who became a middle schooler no longer liked me volunteering in his school.

I was looking for a volunteer experience after retiring as a Psychologist that allowed flexibility in hours.  I love cooking and baking and the first kitchen at the resource centre was just getting finished. I remember cooking some first meals with barely a wooden spoon and a pot.  I brought in my own for a while.  My favourite area is the kitchen and cooking with whatever is available.  It’s always a mystery basket when I arrive in the morning.  I suggested that I could become the Wednesday morning gal and be available for pickups and deliveries while cooking at the same time.  I have been involved as a meals coordinator, have assisted with corporate group cooks and with volunteer chop squads.  I also did food pickups from food link for awhile.

I am amazed with how the program has grown and the number of families we help on a weekly basis.  I like the fact that we volunteers are flexible enough to respond quickly either for the short term or long term in special situations.

I feel that people should consider made by momma as an organization to volunteer with because there is something for everyone either on a regular basis or intermittent.  If you like to cook or bake there is a place, if you like to organize there is a role for you, if you like small children you can help out a mom, if you tweet, plan or can fundraise I raise my hat to you as well.  We fill a place in the community for everyday people who are undergoing a crisis of some sort without all the bureaucracy.

Candis, we sincerely thank you for volunteering with us and doing all that you do. The hundreds of meals you have made for Made by Momma have supported many families and you should feel proud of your contribution.

CINDY R. / JEAN S. / KATHY K. A.K.A “THE MONDAY CREW”

CINDY R.

“…very little goes a long way to brightening up someone’s day.” Cindy R.

Cindy has been volunteering with Made by Momma for over 3 years. She has helped with home support, cooking, and is currently involved with inventory sorting/organization. “I am most comfortable with the inventory,” says Cindy,  “I did enjoy the home support but didn’t feel emotionally strong enough to carry on with that.  I became too attached to those sweet babies!”

Initially she was looking for a charity that focused on children to donate to from a fund that her and her husband had set up. She mentioned Made by Momma to her own children and they surprised Cindy and her husband with a group cook session with all of their friends for their wedding anniversary. Cindy says, “Everyone I met from MBM through that experience was so great!  As an empty nester I thought it may be a good fit for me to help with children.   I decided to look into how I could help out in a more hands on way.”

When Cindy first started, she was drawn to our mission statement. Cinday says, “…there is no other agency in Calgary that does not require a certain income level and/or a referral from any other social agency, and everything is provided free of charge, MBM fills an important niche for those who fall through the cracks.  It helps those who have a temporary need and provides that support that so many others get through extended family or friends.”
Cindy soon realized that her efforts however big or small were making a big difference in the families lives that Made by Momma was helping, “There are many more needy families in crisis in Calgary then I would have guessed.  Also, that very little goes a long way to brightening up someone’s day,” says Cindy.

Now, over three years later, Cindy is one of our rocking “Monday Crew” inventory sorters. She looks forward to seeing the Made by Momma resource centre grow and become all that it needs to be in order for the organization to be effective and efficient.

JEAN S.

“Any help keeping children & families, safe, warm, fed & having hope deserves to progress.” Jean S.

Jean is a retired nurse of forty-three years. She moved to Calgary two years ago to be closer to her family, but she is originally from Scotland. Jean used to live and volunteer in Niagara on the Lake and wished to find something similar here in Calgary. Her daughter in law had heard of Made by Momma through doing a corporate group baking night. Jean happens to live in the area and thought it was bonus that she didn’t have to drive to resource centre in order to volunteer, “Driving is still an adventure,” says Jean.

One afternoon, she dropped in and met Cindy who was sorting donations. “The rest is history,” says Jean. In only six months Jean has participated in our Christmas programs as well as two share tables. She has become a regular member of “The Monday Crew” sorting through donations in order to keep inventory tidy and organized. Jean believes that, “Any help keeping children & families, safe, warm, fed & having hope deserves to progress.”

KATHIE K.

 “The mothers need support to help them be successful in life and have happy children.” Kathie K.

Kathie is a regular member of “The Monday Crew.” She started about 1 year ago after she heard about Made by Momma on a volunteering in Calgary website. She originally planned to do data entry but found herself sorting inventory on Mondays with Cindy and Jean as well as helping with Share Tables. “Cindy and Jean.  They are awesome women,” says Kathie. She was drawn to Made by Momma because of the type of help that we needed – so many different things to do like data entry and inventory sorting…She would love to get to know more volunteers. Since her time with Made by Momma, Kathie has realized that there are a lot of women and children in need. Kathie says, “The mothers need support to help them be successful in life and have happy children.”

To “The Monday Crew” we know how crazy it can be to sort through mounds and piles of donations and inventory.  As soon as an item comes in, it gets processed and goes out to a women or child in need – all because of your kind commitment to sorting!  We thank you for helping Made by Momma stay organized and we sincerely appreciate all of your hard work!

BRENDA P.

“It is fun creating meals out of donated items and the people picking up are always so grateful and thankful for the work done by MBM.” Brenda P.

I am a semi-retired accountant, married with 2 adult daughters.  After downsizing and having grown up children, I needed something productive to occupy my  time.  I found MBM through Meet-up. I started volunteering with MBM in January of 2016.

I was a busy active volunteer in my children’s activities, mostly school and sports. I had a void to fill once they were adults. I chose MBM because I was impressed with the programs they offered, the different volunteering options, and the flexibility it gives to the volunteers.

I love the people who volunteer at MBM and how I feel like a part of the organization.  It is very therapeutic to me to volunteer for such an incredible organization.

When I joined, there were so many different areas to choose from. At first I wanted to try several areas to see what I liked doing best.  I tried a home visit, donation sorting, pulling inventory and packing hampers, casino, gardening, and group cooks.  I volunteered to take care of the flowerbeds last summer and in the fall I became a regular cook on Thursdays and helped out with the client pick-ups while I am at the Resource Centre.  It is fun creating meals out of donated items and the people picking up are always so grateful and thankful for the work done by MBM.

In my short time at MBM, I have seen the growth in demand for assistance.  I feel that MBM provides an important service to those in need.  I hope that MBM can sustain the growth and continue to help so many mommas and their families.

It is incredible the amount of work it takes to run this organization and it is 100% volunteer based.  There is a place for anyone who wants to volunteer.

It is an incredible organization that helps out so many families.  Whatever your passion, there is an opportunity for everyone.

There are so many facets in this organization.  In my opinion:  Firstly, it helps so many families.  Second, it welcomes volunteers to give whatever they can contribute.  Finally, it provides an opportunity to recycle and reuse a tremendous amount of products, which helps the environment as well as families.

I am thankful and grateful that I found MBM and they welcomed me into their organization. MBM provided me with a very positive experience.

Dear Brenda, we are so grateful to have found you! Thank you for your contribution and all that you do for the mums and their kids who are experiencing a crisis in their lives. Your efforts help them move forward again.  We appreciate all of the support you have given us.

SHELAGH B.

“I’m just really happy I’m finally at a place in my life where I can do what I can to help.” Shelagh B.

Shelagh heard about Made by Momma about three or four years ago from the 12 Cans to Christmas program. She has been regularly volunteering since October 2016. “It was an organization that I thought was really needed and I’ve always gravitated to programs for new momma’s,” says Shelagh. Made by Momma was a natural fit because she used to work with the prenatal program at CUPS, before becoming a full time momma. “I love that it is an entirely volunteer run organization and I love that I feel like I’m doing something that is truly needed,” says Shelagh.

Shelagh has participated in a myriad of activities with MBM. She leads the pulling and packing of clothes, diapers, wipes, baby gear but she also does COBS pick ups, client deliveries and sometimes helps with the putting away/organizing and the Casino fundraisers. Shelagh says, “I really enjoy all of them but I think my fav is the pulling and packing…I enjoy the organization of it lol!” In the future she would like to try her hand at meal packing and preparing.

She has enjoyed witnessing the recent renovation of the Resource Centre, “I just LOVE the new kitchen!” she says and she is proud that we help as many families as we can.

Her time with Made by Momma has taught her that there are many dedicated women who share the inspiration of helping other women no matter the circumstances. “It is an amazing organization that has a huge number of needs and a variety of tasks for people to take on…whether you only have an hour or two a month you can spare or whole days at a time,” says Shelagh.

It’s clear that Shelagh is a passionate and dedicated volunteer. She believes in the mandate of MBM and appreciates that MBM’s services aren’t solely based on a financial need, “If you are a momma and you need some help we are here for you. I’m just really happy I’m finally at a place in my life where I can do what I can to help.”

Shelagh, we’re happy you are with us, helping us with all that you do.  Your dedication to lead the inventory packing on top of other tasks is greatly appreciated.  Thank you for your dedication and your commitment to creating a village for those families who don’t have one.

LAURIE W.

“…now that I’m preparing birthday bags for The Happy Birthday Project, it’s like shopping from all the donations, and I get to be a party planner every week.” Laurie W.

I read about Made by Momma in 2013 when it was featured in the “Neighbours” section of the Calgary Herald with the agencies being supported by the Christmas Fund.  It resonated with me because a week after my daughter was born in 2003, I was ill with a mystery that led to days of hospital tests followed by a week in the hospital.  A neighbour helped out with our newborn while I had to keep going back for more tests, and then my mom was able to come to Calgary to help out while I was hospitalized, but my circle of support was small and I couldn’t imagine what it would have been like if I didn’t have that.

After I read about Made by Momma, it was on my to-do list to volunteer, but I didn’t actually start until fall of 2014. It was the support I could have needed if my situation had been a little bit different, plus I love helping and cooking.

Everyone is so appreciative of the help they receive. I started as the “Thursday resource centre person,” and I did chop squads, volunteered at the Fall Fundraisers and at Gallery Calorie.

Currently, I’m preparing birthday bags for The Happy Birthday Project, it’s like shopping from all the donations, and I get to be a party planner every week.  I love coordinating the tableware, choosing gifts that match the child’s interests and wishes and making special loot bags

In a time where there is so much negativity, This makes you realize how much good there is in our community.  I like to believe that because social workers and shelters refer the families that get birthday bag, that they truly need the help to have a special day.  I’m happy to make that day happen.  It’s very fulfilling. I am amazed by the generosity of individual donors, and community organizations.  I have lots of time to give, but others have given the items that are so needed to make this program work.

Laurie, Thank you for your incredible dedication to The Happy Birthday Project.  You take great care in providing the perfect birthday bags that will bring joy to the kids and their families on their special day.  We sincerely appreciate your commitment to Made by Momma!

LINDSAY & ROB

“The volunteers are passionate and MBM reaches families from vast backgrounds, demographics, and circumstances. They find a way to help anyone who reaches out.” Lindsay & Rob

 Lindsay and Rob are married with an infant baby. Lindsay learned about Made by Momma on Facebook after looking for somewhere to volunteer with about a cause that she is passionate about. “After having a child I appreciate the ups and downs that occur under normal situations let alone under difficult situations. It’s hands on with families by providing meals, baby gear, home support and I have always enjoyed preparing healthy meals for friends who’ve recently had babies or are ill and can now do so on a bigger scale,” says Lindsay.

So after attending an info meeting, Lindsay began volunteering in November 2016. She often brought her husband along and would carry her baby girl on her body as she did her work at the Resource Centre, “we get to help out and be together,” says Lindsay. Volunteering at MBM has become the highlight of their family’s week. “We get there every week even for just an hour or two. It’s a bright and loving environment and it helps families who may not receive help otherwise,” says Lindsay. “I always look forward to volunteering and feel good when I leave.”

Lindsay and Rob have worked on the Christmas Programs, Adopt-a-Momma, meal packing, meal making, hampers, item sorting, and most recently hosting group cooks! “I really love the meal aspect because as a nutrition coach, providing healthy homemade food can make the world of a difference for families,” says Lindsay.

Volunteering with MBM has provided Lindsay and Rob with an outlet to give back and feel gratitude for their own lives. Lindsay says that she has learned, “how grateful I am for my own support system and how much I value giving back and being able to share that with my daughter.”

In the future, Lindsay and Rob would like to volunteer with home support and meet and talk with some of the families that MBM reaches.

What they love about MBM is that the volunteers are a community and support system for those in crisis. Lindsay says, “MBM doesn’t turn people away and is there to support families during some of the most difficult times. As a volunteer there are many options depending on what you enjoy doing and for my family it’s time we get to spend together.”
In some final words, Lindsay and Rob share these thoughts, “Day in and out there are volunteers at the resource centre, doing deliveries, or home support to see that every family has what it needs. The volunteers are passionate and MBM reaches families from vast backgrounds, demographics, and circumstances. They find a way to help anyone who reaches out.  We love this organization and look forward to growing my part in it.”

Thank you Lindsay and Rob and your baby girl too!  You demonstrate how easy it is to make giving back to the community a family affair!  Thank you for your commitment to Made by Momma and offering your diverse range of interests and skills that helps us in many different ways.  


ROCHELLE L.

“When I saw the posting looking for a baker, I thought it would be an excellent opportunity to put these skills to good use and provide baked goods to those in need.  You’ve got to bake the world a better place!” Rochelle L.

Rochelle is a Geologist at Cenovus Energy who is passionate about helping out within her community. Her hobbies include: baking, fossil hunting, backpacking and drumming. One day she came across Made by Momma on the propellus website while looking for a volunteer opportunity. She saw an ad for a baker needed at Made by Momma and was instantly hooked, she knew right away that it was going to be an excellent way for her to get involved. “My mother taught me how to bake at age 5 and have been doing it as a hobby ever since.  When I saw the posting looking for a baker, I thought it would be an excellent opportunity to put these skills to good use and provide baked goods to those in need.  You’ve got to bake the world a better place!” Says Rochelle.
Rochelle has been volunteering with Made by Momma for over three years now, “I love the vibe.  Whenever you enter the Made by Momma building, everyone is so friendly.  It truly is like a family,” she says. Along the way, she has learned quite a few things such as sorting baby goods, she credits the other volunteers around her for teaching her many things as well.

Rochelle has offered her volunteer time in so many ways, baking goods for families and for Katie Fisher Day, delivering baked goods, making thank you cards and birthday, Louise Dean share table set up, the Fall Fundraiser, manning the MBM booth at the Timeraiser event, packing hampers, sorting inventory, labeling donations, and finally shopping and picking up donations for The Happy Birthday Project. From all of those amazing tasks that Rochelle has done, her favorite one is when she celebrated her recent 25th birthday and brought in a group of friends to bake, “It was such a fun experience to have everyone come together for an important cause and to see them smile as they wrote encouraging notes on all the bags of cookies,” says Rochelle.

In the future, Rochelle is excited to be more involved with The Happy Birthday Project by baking cupcakes for the shelter birthday parties, “I helped make a birthday bag with a friend before MBM took it over and I thought it was such an incredible way to provide families with all of the birthday essentials to put a smile on a child’s face.  We have already expanded with more shelters and families, so I can’t wait to be a part of this project going forward,” she says.

Rochelle provided some final words about Made by Momma: “MBM is always looking for extra hands.  Volunteering at MBM is excellent because you are guaranteed to be busy!  Furthermore, there are so many different tasks that will build on different skill sets.  Whether you are passionate about cooking, baking, sorting, delivering meals, homecare, card making…there are endless opportunities to lend a hand.  It is the perfect place to meet new people, as everyone is very friendly and cares so much! MBM is fully volunteer run and provides meals, home support and baby supplies for families; they are the support system that isn’t always available during times of adversity and crisis.  MBM also provides birthday supplies and gifts for children in shelters, or for families faced with adverse circumstances, allowing these children to feel extra special and celebrated on their birthday.

I am very thankful to have the opportunity to volunteer with an organization that is making a huge impact every single day!  Made by Momma is a cause that I hold dear to my heart and cannot wait for what is to come…”

Rochelle, we are grateful for your endless contributions and your sincere enthusiasm for helping Calgary families facing crisis. We appreciate all of your dedication and your heartfelt support. Thank you from the bottom of our hearts!

DAWN M.

“If it takes a village to raise a child, how much better are we when we consider our community to be our family, and we offer support where and when we can?” Dawn M.

When I started volunteering with Made by Momma just over a year ago, it was with the intention of helping moms with small children who were in need of support, nourishment, or resources. Little did I know how much I would gain from my experience.

Made by Momma’s mission is: to provide wholesome nourishment and nurturing care for mothers and young children facing situations of adversity and crisis.

Made by Momma connects mommas in need of rest, recovery and support with prepared meals, wholesome baked goods, baby essentials, children’s items, and supportive visitors. Services are offered to mothers of young children affected by short-term or life –changing illness, injury or adversity.

The resource centre is located just down the road from the Calgary office in Kensington. It is equipped with a commercial kitchen where teams of volunteers, including corporate team building groups, prepare a wide variety of meals for freezing, then dispersal to mommas in their homes, or to the neo-natal intensive care units at the Peter Lougheed and South Calgary hospitals. We also have a space across the street with an extremely organized home for clothes, essential baby items, and equipment. There is another group of volunteers who will visit with mommas in crisis in a supporting capacity.

My own small role is to deliver those meals and essential items. Once a week I head to the Resource Centre to pick up deliveries for two to four families I’ll be assisting that week. On any given week, MBM delivers to a dozen or more families. I make my deliveries at the end of the day, on my way home from work.

I’ve made deliveries to mommas with newborn triplets (some with health issues), mommas with sick babies, mommas with newborns and partners with health issues, mommas escaping abuse, and mommas in immediate financial crisis. Each time I am humbled by how appreciative, grateful and polite our mommas are. They are happy to pay it forward when they have the chance and indeed many of Made by Momma’s core base of volunteers are mommas we once helped out.

Working with Made by Momma also gives me a strong sense of perspective and a deep gratitude for the blessings in my life. Many of these mommas do not have the resources or family support I take for granted. If it takes a village to raise a child, how much better are we when we consider our community to be our family, and we offer support where and when we can?

I am so humbled to be a part of Made by Momma and I plan to organize a corporate group cook with my work family to join me, for a day in the kitchen, preparing meals for my Made by Momma families. It’s a small thing for us, it’s an incredibly big thing for them.

Dawn, thank you for your dedication to making sure our meals get to the families that need them. Your compassion shows and your commitment to advocating for our cause is sincerely appreciated!

 

Thank you Simple Spaces!

i Jan 27th No Comments by

Today we were invited to attend the AGM for Home Solutions / Simple Spaces. Over the last 25 years, Home Solutions has become a leading manufacturer and installer of closets, garage storage, interior glass, mirrors and shower doors in Calgary. This local company chose Made by Momma as their charity of choice for the past two years. Despite the downturn in our economy and the challenges faced for businesses in the building/renovation industry this company made it their mission to raise funds on our behalf anyway! We were surprised and thrilled to be presented with a donation for $5,843.85! ♥

Simple Spaces Big Cheque

The following slides were presented at the company AGM showing some of the creative ways this mighty team raised funds for Made by Momma, and volunteered their time throughout the year:

Slide 1Slide 2Slide 3Slide 4
THANK YOU Wendy & Tanya for choosing Made by Momma as your charity of choice; and so much gratitude to the whole Home Solutions / Simple Spaces Team – for contributing throughout the year. Our hearts are full! ♥ Your support makes a direct and immediate impact on the families we support in our local community!

Interested in learning more about this fabulous, big-hearted company? Check out their website here!

An interview with Donna Korchinski

i Nov 4th No Comments by

Thank you to Donna Korchinski for coming down to the Made by Momma Resource Centre and learning more about what we do as an organization and helping us share what our most urgent needs are: baby essentials like diapers, and financial donations to help us renovate our Resource Centre so we’ll have more space to continue our work.
Donna has a wonderful history sharing stories through her radio and television journalism career and we’re so grateful that she wanted to share a little about our organization.

You can see our interview here:

The wonderful world of the eWomen Network

i Aug 5th No Comments by

Made by Momma was the lucky recipient of a grant from the local Calgary Chapter of the eWomen Network. This is a group of entrepreneurial women that meet several times a month throughout the year to learn, teach, network and propel their businesses to greatness. They chose to support Made by Momma with a grant because they too firmly believe in women-helping-women.

On top of that awesomeness, we were also invited to their annual international conference in Dallas to accept the grant and meet all of the wonderful people in front of this fabulous organization – including the ever-inspiring Sandra Yancey.

Three members of our Board of Directors attended the conference and participated in educational sessions, business development workshops, networking and gleaning from many inspiring speakers. We came home inspired and fully charged to dive back into our ‘business’…. Made by Momma.

Thank you Yvonne Basten, Cameo Delisle and Sandra Yancy for recognizing and celebrating what we do and why it’s important.
#GiveFirstShareAlways #ewnconf

Neighbour Day 2016

i Jun 22nd No Comments by

Neighbour Day Block Party 2016

The Made by Momma Neighbour Day Block Party took place on Saturday, June 18th 2016 from 11:30am to 1:30pm at our resource centre in West Hillhurst.

From the moment we began planning our Neighbour Day celebration at the Made by Momma Resource Centre in West Hillhurst, there was a lot of excitement about sharing our mission with everyone around us.  Many of our neighbours had seen our resource centre, but didn’t know exactly what we were all about.  We wanted to take this opportunity to share our space with our neighbours and get better acquainted.  Each of the board members involved with the planning came to the table with big hearts and big ideas!  We had volunteers working on graphic design projects (Special thanks to Rand Al-Hashmy), a Pinterest worthy delicious bake sale, planning crafts, fun games and activities, calling and securing vendors, partnering with a food truck, walking door to door to post our invite, managing social media and of course the ordeal of getting a city permit for our very neighbourly Neighbour Day block party – check out the link at the bottom of this post for a Calgary Herald article about that…

Slight permit woes were not going to stop us from having our big ideas come to fruition.  It was a busy 2 months of planning, and we are so thrilled with how the day turned out. So much so that we think we might need to make it last more than just 2 hours next year!  We had smiling kids with their beautifully painted faces, pony rides galore, bouncy houses bouncing away and a bake sale to die for!  The Avatara Food Truck served up delicious pizza to the crowd and a talented DJ spun some super happy pop music to keep us all tapping our toes!

We were so happy to meet our neighbours and invite them in to see what we are all about.  We took this opportunity to also launch two new initiatives: A Little Free Library where anyone can come by and take a book from a huge array of genres that we have sourced, and The Happy Birthday Project which enables families, facing a time of serious adversity in their life, to provide their child(ren) with a special birthday party package.

Thanks to our generous neighbours and volunteers, we raised over $750.00 in our bake sale and cookbook sale, received baby care donations including; 1000 wipes, 736 diapers, 19 baby hygiene items, 6 cans of formula as well as some personal hygiene products.

Check out some pics below!  Hope to see you again next year!

With our sincerest thanks,

The Made by Momma team.

Link to Calgary Herald Article: http://calgaryherald.com/news/local-news/charity-upset-with-750-fee-for-neighbour-day-block-party-event

Scotiabank Calgary Marathon 2016

i May 29th No Comments by

While we didn’t have a grown up team of runners this year, we had these little guys run the kids 1km fun run!  Boy did they have fun!

In addition to the strong effort the little runners put forth, Made by Momma volunteers got up bright and early to man the water stations and help hydrate the long distance runners – and was it ever a bright day with the sun shining and a cool breeze blowing!

Thanks for all of your hard work and dedication guys!  It’s not easy getting up at the crack of dawn – but when you are inspired by the work you do and those strong and healthy runners…how can you not jump into action?  Of course – it’s always for a great cause too!

Here’s looking forward to Team Made by Momma 2017 – runners, walkers, water station volunteers, and cheerleaders!  Join us!

CM 2016 Kids Run Team Made by Momma water station 2016

 

How to Help Fort McMurray Displaced Mommas

i May 8th 1 Comment by

Donations Needed!

without WC

 

URGENT needs for Fort McMurray/Area displaced families:

  • Diapers – ALL sizes
  • Baby Wipes – (new/unopened)
  • Formula – (new/unopened/not expired)
  • Baby Food – (new/unopened/not expired)
  • Baby Hygiene – (new/unopened)
  • Adult Personal Care/Hygiene – (new/unopened)
  • Gift Cards (to purchase needed essentials)

Please note: These are the ONLY items we are accepting for our Northern Alberta families! Any other donations will be distributed to local families in need.


Calgary/Airdrie DROP OFF LOCATIONS:

  • Made by Momma Volunteer Resource Centre  66 21st Street, West Hillhurst NW – check open hours first

#ALBERTASTRONG

2016 SUMMER STUDENT INTERNS

i May 7th 2 Comments by

2016 SUMMER STUDENT INTERNS

Looking for a summer job? Love giving back to the community? We’ve got exciting news! We’ve received another Canada Summer Jobs Program Grant to hire 2 Summer Students this year!

As a volunteer-run organization, every aspect of what we do is done by volunteers….client intake, cooking & baking, updating the website, packing up baby essentials, answering emails, delivering meals, organizing donation drives, attending events…and everything in between!

The summer months can be a busy time for our organization so we’re looking forward to finding two dynamic students to help us run our Resource Centre. One position is our Resource Centre Coordinator and the other is our Community Kitchen Coordinator.
We’d love to find a student that is taking non-profit studies, social work, nursing, child development, psychology, sociology, business, communications, culinary arts, and nutrition or dietitian studies to be a part of our team. These positions have been created for a student between 18 and 30 years old, who has been attending school full-time, and will be resuming classes in the fall.
Additional information on each available role can be found here: 2016 SUMMER STUDENT JOB POSTINGS

These jobs will provide you with the opportunity to acquire skills, gain valuable work experience and help finance your return to school.

If you are passionate about the work our charity does and you’d like to apply for our Resource Centre Coordinator position or our Community Kitchen Coordinator, please get in touch with us!

2016 Summer Students

************************************************************************************************
This position is being supported by the Canada Summer Jobs Program/Service Canada
Eligible Student Participants: To be eligible to participate in the CSJ initiative, individuals must:
• be between 15 and 30 years of age at the start of the employment;
• have been registered as full-time students in the previous academic year and intend to return to school on a full-time basis in the next academic year;
• be a Canadian citizen, permanent resident, or person to whom refugee protection has been conferred under the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act3; and,
• be legally entitled to work in Canada in accordance with relevant provincial/territorial legislation and regulations.

National Volunteer Week 2016

i Apr 17th No Comments by

FEATURED VOLUNTEERS  
National Volunteer Week – April 10 – 17, 2016
By Renu Chandarana

Our volunteers are the backbone of our organization – their time, energy and dedication is how we are able to fulfill our mission day after day.  ♥
As National Volunteer Week 2016 comes to a close, we want to acknowledge and profile a few of of our amazing volunteers that truly make a difference to our organization.

 

Maggie N.
 “I love that I’m part of the support system for other moms when they need it. I am fortunate to have family and friends who are my support, and by volunteering with Made by Momma I can pay it forward by helping other moms in tough situations. “– Maggie N.

Maggie is a married mom of two young boys (2.5 years and 1 month). She heard about Made by Momma through the Community Knowledge Centre on The Calgary Foundation website and has been volunteering with us since August 2015.
Maggie empathizes with our clients because when her first son was just 6 months old, she broke her wrist and underwent surgery to repair it.  She found it difficult to care for her baby because of her cast and was so fortunate to have a strong network of friends and family to help her through that challenging time.  “Afterwards,” Maggie says, “I often thought about how hard it would be for moms in similar situations without a support system like I have, and wanted to find a way to help those women if I could. When I read about MBM I knew immediately that this was the organization I had been looking for.”  She felt an immediate connection to the work and by volunteering with MBM, Maggie says, “I can pay it forward by helping other moms in tough situations.”
Maggie has put her keen event planning skills to work by joining the Fall Fundraiser committee and Golf for Girls committee.  She has volunteered by doing data entry and making deliveries and is even dedicated to donating breast milk to a client. Most recently, she represented MBM by sitting at a table at Mommylicious and found it to be so fulfilling, “I was able to talk to many women who had been helped by MBM and hear first-hand how important the work we do is,” says Maggie.
Of her time with us at MBM Maggie says, “the time and energy spent volunteering at MBM immediately benefits families in our city. An afternoon spent cooking or packing boxes means many children will have a healthy meals and new clothing that week. There are so many opportunities that there is truly something It really is like asking a group of friends for the kind of help you need, be it healthy meals, a box of diapers, or a helping hand. This type of support is so important for women with young children, and MBM fills an important role for women who don’t have existing support systems in their life.  And the people are awesome!”
Thank you so much for your enthusiasm and dedication Maggie! We think you’re awesome too!

 

Barb L.
“I am a mother to 2 boys and I grew up in a single parent home – my mom sure could have used some help from an organization like Made by Momma.” – Barb L.

Barb is a registered nurse who teaches at Mount Royal University.  She heard about MBM when a group of second year nursing student’s were assigned to us for their community placement in the spring of 2013.
After seeing how her students did and how the organization was operating, she decided to volunteer as well, “I was very impressed by MBM’s organization after working with Allyson and her team members.  I have been a MBM volunteer for almost 3 years,” says Barb.
Barb is able to fit in volunteering with us whenever she saw a break in her busy work and home life schedule.  She has assisted with fundraising events, made meals and baking, sorted donations, delivered meals and baking and has done many home visits.
What does Barb like best about volunteering with MBM?  She says, “I love the concept of empowering families to help themselves. By providing meals and /or assistance, families can focus on caring for their children and feel supported by volunteers.” She recognizes how important it is to be in the field and on the ground volunteering and giving back to our community, Barb says, “As our economy continues to be unstable, families are struggling. It is the children who suffer when their parents are stressed and under financial pressure. When a volunteer brings amazing homemade and nutritious meals to a family, it brings a smile to everyone’s face.”
Her favourite volunteer job with us is doing home visits.  She loves the one-on-one mentorship and finds the ability to assist mom’s within their own homes very rewarding.  Of her time with us at MBM, Barb says, “It is an excellent way to meet some amazing people who are passionate about helping others…they have been able to accomplish so much with so little.”
Thank you so much for your time, energy and commitment to Made by Momma Barb, we sincerely appreciate it! 

 

Kaitlin S.
“Made by Momma gives families hope and provides that unconditional support they need. MBM is honestly a home away from home for people who have no one to support them. Even as a volunteer no matter what, I know that the volunteers and people at MBM will be there for me through anything.” – Kaitlin S.

Kaitlin came to Made by Momma by way of an internship through the Public Relations program at Mount Royal University.  In the last 15 months that Kaitlin has been with us, she has represented MBM as a volunteer for many of our big events such as Stroller-A-Thon, the Scotiabank Marathon, Golf for Girls and the Fall Fundraiser – and she brought her mom on board as a volunteer too. She has also played a role in putting together MBM’s first and second annual reports as well as helping with communications and social media tasks.  It’s clear that Kaitlin has a passion for giving back to her community, “I love what MBM does, I have worked in a daycare for a very long time so I see a lot of families that are struggling to make ends meet. MBM provides families like these a second chance and I think that is so important. Especially now with the economy being as bad as it is,” says Kaitlin.   In her spare time Kaitlin enjoys photography and has played competitive soccer for the last 18 years, she also is passionate about working with children and animals.  Her future goals include working in PR within the not for profit sector.
Thank you for your continued enthusiasm and dedication Kaitlin!

Andrea W.
“I liked the grass roots nature of the organization and the low (really zero) administrative costs.  I don’t think people really realize how high these can be in some organizations due to the number of paid members (i.e. in some cases it is a business venture).” – Andrea W.

Andrea is a mom of two hardworking daughters who are studying at university away from home.  She heard about MBM through the company she was working for, and began volunteering with group cooks, packing food hampers and making deliveries.  When Andrea got the opportunity to begin home visits with clients, things just clicked for her and she knew that this is where she belonged, “I am a very type-A driven individual, very results focused and not very good at sitting still.  I had no idea I could look after 6-month old triplets (adjusted for being premature) for four hours each week confined to a small living room over a period of visits for about three months.  It is amazing how you can use three of your four limbs to keep them fed and content,” says Andrea.   With her daughters away at University, Andrea enjoys spending some of her free time with MBM because of, “It also really puts your life in perspective.  Some of the families I visit are in quite difficult situations and I (or so many of my friends) have no reason to complain about our situations in Calgary,” Andrea says.  In the future Andrea would like to continue home visits with clients, as that’s what she is passionate about, but would also enjoy meal coordinating in order to satisfy that Type-A brain of hers!
Thank you for all you do for our Made by Momma families Andrea!

 

Nexen Energy ULC 
Nexen Energy is a Calgary oil and gas company that develops energy resources for the UK, West Africa, the USA and Western Canada. A part of Nexen’s mandate is to provide protected time off for their employees so they can volunteer and give back to their community.  The awesome Community Investment Team at Nexen has been involved with MBM since 2013 when they first participated in a group cook hosted at the ATCO Blue Flame Kitchen, providing many meals for our MBM clients.  Since then, their time with us has snowballed and in the last 15 months, they have contributed to over 500 servings of food and baked goods for the many MBM clients.  In addition to the Nexen volunteers rolling up their sleeves and cooking meals, they have also done numerous projects around the resource centre and included us in their volunteer fair. As well, Nexen has generously committed to 3 years of support for our community pantry and baby essentials program which equals to a value of $5,000.00 per year! ♥
Made by Momma is ever so thankful to have your support and we sincerely appreciate the time, dedication and enthusiasm that Nexen employees bring to our group cooks!

 

Tara P.
“I don’t volunteer in the traditional sense, my schedule hasn’t allowed me to commit to a role and so I created a way to volunteer. “ – Tara P.   

I first learned about MBM around 3 years ago and was immediately impressed with the organization based on how it was founded.  I have an acquaintance who volunteered for MBM and between media/social media and word of mouth I started learning more.
I don’t volunteer in the traditional sense, my schedule hasn’t allowed me to commit to a role and so I created a way to volunteer.  I volunteer by sharing posts of needed items through social media with my friends and community.  I will pick up donations that otherwise wouldn’t reach MBM – I sort them, clean them if possible or needed and then drop them at the Resource Centre.
Through my community we have donated countless clothing and shoes as well as crib mattresses, strollers, a high chair, diapers, toys, books, toiletries and other items.  At Christmas I also approached my dentist and he donated a large amount of toothpaste, floss and some toothbrushes.  My sons dentist also donated toothbrushes and floss.
It’s hard for me to call myself a volunteer for MBM but I’m helping in my own way- spreading information about this fabulous organization and its existence is how I started and now my neighbors know my name and some contact me to pick up or I come home to boxes of donations on my porch.  I have found my neighbors in Royal Oak and Rocky Ridge are extremely generous and really appreciate having a local drop off/ pick up available and I’m happy I’ve been able to fill up my car over and over!
Also, my 3 year old son loves helping me pick up and is always asking when we can go to MBM to deliver more donations.  I love being able to share with him about the role of service and volunteer organizations from such a young age.
I look forward to watching MBM continue to grow and expand and finding time to be at the RC helping in any role I can fit in future.
Thank you and your whole community for your continued support and generosity Tara!

A million heartfelt thank yous to our MANY wonderful volunteers for their part in making Made by Momma who we are.
#NVW2016

National Volunteer Week 2016

 

2015 Annual Report

i Apr 1st No Comments by

2015 Annual Report MadebyMommaThank you to everyone who helped make 2015 an amazing year!

2015 was another incredibly busy year for our Made by Momma team! And while we saw an huge increase in client referrals and requests for our services within the community we were fortunate to have many great opportunities and more community involvement to sustain us.
We would like to take this opportunity to share our Made by Momma 2015 Annual Report which summarizes the year we had.  The statistics presented in this report are incredible showing the  to assist with during a family’s time of crisis and adversity.

On behalf of our Made by Momma Board of Directors, we would like to thank all of our fantastic supporters and our amazing volunteers who rose to the challenges we were presented. We know it take a village to make a difference and we’re looking forward to what 2016 will bring!
If you’re interested in learning more or getting involved with Made by Momma please check out our Volunteering page for additional information.

Helping our Northern Neighbours Project

i Sep 28th No Comments by

Helping our Northern Neighbours Project

As you know, Made by Momma supports families in Calgary and surrounding communities when they are experiencing times of adversity or crisis. But sometimes we extend our reach a little further if we can. It hurts our hearts to hear stories of families living in Canada’s extreme northern communities that are starving, often eating only one small meal a day, and hearing stories of babies being fed powdered coffee creamer rather than breastmilk, formula or cow’s milk. These families are living in a severe food security crisis.

Due to the incredibly high prices in the North, it is very common for families to not be able to afford the cost of basic necessities. Some of the general food staples prices are simply shocking… Tide laundry pods $31.99, a 24-pack of toilet paper $39.99, a box of Minute Rice $18.99, eight 295ml Minute Maid Punch Juices $47.49, one can of pie filling $13.99, one lb of butter $8.89, a single serve cup of Campbell’s soup $6.29, one box of Kraft Dinner $4.09, one container of baby formula $55.99, one box of 144 diapers $79.99 and more…..

Nunavut, specifically, has 15x the rate of suicides compared to the rest of Canada according to CBC. Recent news reports show that there is an overwhelming feeling of hopelessness in these communities because there is high unemployment, low education, food insecurity and overcrowding.

The Helping our Northern Neighbours project offers some of these families the opportunity for support by asking organizations and individuals to send much needed care packages so that these families don’t go to sleep hungry.

Our Made by Momma team decided we could also provide some support to our Northern Neighbours. We are happy to share that we have “adopted” three families from Kugaaruk, Nunavut and have committed to helping support them over a three-year period. Our three families equal a total of 14 people: three moms, three dads, a 91 year old granddad; a 17 year old teen boy, a new born and five young children. Our Made by Momma team will collect the items most needed by our families and send boxes of food, baby care products, personal care items, school supplies, clothing and other items to help support them.

Items cited as most desired by northerners have been compiled by the Facebook group Feeding my Family;

  1. White flour
  2. Baking powder, baking soda,
  3. Cereal,
  4. Dry powdered milk/carnation milk,
  5. Toilet paper, Paper towels,
  6. Macaroni, pasta, side dish, or any kind of noodles,
  7. Side dishes, hamburger helpers,
  8. Canned fish – tuna, salmon, sardines
  9. Soups of any kind boxes or cans, chicken, beef, pork
  10. Rice – most northerners cook with Minute rice and Uncle Ben’s Converted rice
  11. Pasta or spaghetti sauces
  12. Canned goods of any kind
  13. Tea/coffee,
  14. Sugar
  15. Honey, jams, spreads,
  16. Peanut butter, peanuts, nuts, raisins
  17. Puddings powdered, or just add milk products,
  18. Shampoos baby/ adult shampoos, sanitary napkins
  19. Hand soaps bars/liquid or hand sanitizers,
  20. Detergents pods laundry/dishes,
  21. Baby food (dry), Tylenol or Advil for kids, diapers, pullups
  22. Cheese of any kind dried, packaged cheese whiz or miracle whip
  23. Dried fruits apples, bananas, mixed anything dried in cans, packages or boxes
  24. Biscuits’ pilot hard or soft of any kind,
  25. Cookies of any kind, just add water or packages
  26. Any juice of any kind – dried or powdered juices
  27. Winter clothes (highest rating – cold weather), winter boots, blankets, wool (not acrylic) mitts, gloves, scarves, toques.
  28. Brita filters
  29. Klim milk powder for Elders
    * Please note: this list was borrowed from the Feeding my Family Facebook page and is not necessarily the items we need for our particular families.

We know it takes a village, and Made by Momma is proud to be able to help and provide these families with a much-needed support system.

Our wonderful friends at the Kinette Club of Calgary have graciously made a financial donation to help cover some of the project’s expenses. Canadian North Air has also agreed to support the cost of air freight (which is incredibly expensive) into Nunavut. And finally, thank you to the Helping our Northern Neighbours  grassroots project for recognizing the situation of our fellow Canadians and doing something about it.

Please contact us if you too want to get involved and help support our three Nunavut families!
Donated items can be brought to our Resource Centre. (please check open hours)

#HelpingOurNorthernNeighbours #Nunavut #HONN #FoodSecurity #FeedingMyFamily

canadian_north-logoNEW-Big

 

Kinette Club of Calgary

 

 

KUGAARUK HELICOPTER VIEWKUGAARUK

Gallery Calorie – 2015

i Jun 23rd No Comments by

Gallery Calorie!

On June 20, 2015, Calgary’s popular neighbourhood, Inglewood, was filled with exotic smells and visual delights as people wandered 9th Avenue. The 13th annual Gallery Calorie hosted by the Artemis Foundation provided individuals with the opportunity to tour galleries, shops and restaurants, sample delicious food and view local creative artwork – all in the name of supporting a local charity.

Made by Momma was extremely fortunate and grateful to be selected as the charity of choice for 2015.

The Artemis Foundation is made up of passionate women who all strive to give back to the community by supporting local charities that support women and children. Being a 100% volunteer-run organization like us, these ladies have no limits to their passion and determination to give back.

The Artemis Foundation provided an atmosphere with #GalCal where people could browse and enjoy the shops and scenery of Inglewood at their own pace. The street and cafes were filled with smiles and laughter as everyone enjoyed the outdoors and of course, all of the food and drinks! Our volunteers enjoyed the day just as much as the ticket holders did, as they were welcomed with open arms and treated like family by the Artemis Foundation team.

Gallery Calorie was capped off with a party in the park where the attendees could compete in the popular Art Race vying for some beautiful art; enjoy live music, more food and drinks, a silent auction and both a wine & beer raffle and the company of fellow event goers.

Overall #GalCal was a MAJOR success as it raised $30,000 for Made by Momma. Their generous donation will allow for us to improve our services and client support. Artemis’ donation helps us get one step closer to making our Resource Centre expansion plans a reality.

On behalf of Made by Momma, we want to thank the Artemis Foundation members for their support and for selecting us as their charity of choice.

There is a saying that when women work together amazing things happen. Made by Momma’s partnership with the Artemis Foundation is proof positive that amazing things can happen!

 

Art Race
Bandit Burger
Bubbles
Heads or Tails

Refreshing

The Band
Wine
Yum

Sponsors

Made by Momma Annual Report 2014

i Jun 10th No Comments by

MadebyMomma2014 was another successful year for Made by Momma. The year was filled with amazing opportunities, community involvement and meaningful partnerships. We also had an increase in client referrals and requests for our services within the community.

We would like to take this opportunity to share our Made by Momma 2014 Annual Report which summarizes the wonderful year we had. We have also included a copy of our Assistance Coordinator Report 2014 which was presented during our Annual General Meeting this past spring which highlights the incredible work our volunteers commit to on a daily basis. The statistics presented in this report are incredible while at the same time they highlight some of the heartbreaking stories we get the opportunity to assist with during a family’s time of crisis and adversity.

On behalf of our Made by Momma Board of Directors, we would like to thank all of our supporters and dedicated volunteers – it truly does take a village to make a difference. We are looking forward to the next chapter in our story. If you’re interested in learning more or getting involved with Made by Momma please check out our Volunteering page for additional information.

 

Made by Momma Needs Your Help with a Simple Vote!

i May 4th No Comments by

Made by Momma is currently qualified for the CST Inspired Minds Learning Project and we have the opportunity to win a part of the $250,000 prize pool for our idea. How can YOU help us win? Simple! By voting every day for our project idea during the voting round. To vote please click here.

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Food has a direct impact on our cognitive performance, energy, mood, overall health and our ability to handle stressful situations. We believe nutrient dense foods are essential and affect a child’s behaviour, health and development. Well-nourished children are typically more alert, attentive, physically active and better able to benefit from learning experiences. All children should be fed nourishing meals even through situations of adversity or crisis.

Our idea is to implement a cooking program for families and children who would benefit from a better understanding of nutritionally abundant home cooking eliminating the argument that processed fast food is cheaper to eat than wholesome freshly prepared meals. Kids need hands-on learning opportunities in the kitchen to experience the who, what, where, when and why of nutritious food!

We have our own commercial kitchen to offer fun and informative workshops for families who want to learn about; cooking with kids, mal planning, grocery budgeting, safe food handling, special dietary needs and nutrition for pregnant & parenting teens. Our kitchen will be a place of learning, support, cooking and friendship!

Made by Momma has always relied on our own grassroots fundraising efforts and community support. We do not receive any government funding to support our work. The amount of families we can help is directly related to the amount of donations we receive in any given year. We believe that our services are vital to providing aid to the socially, emotionally and/or financially distressed families in our communities. By having the opportunity for funding through the CST Inspired Minds Learning Project, we will be able to continue with and expand upon the services we are currently able to offer!

Thanks for voting for our idea!

Featured Volunteers – National Volunteer Week 2015

i Apr 19th No Comments by

National Volunteer Week 2015 (April 12-18) is upon us. To honour our volunteers we have chosen to profile some key individuals that represent the different aspects of the work that we do. Highly involved and dedicated, each of these volunteers are integral to our organization and without them we wouldn’t be as successful.

The Kinette Club of Calgary 

To wrap up National Volunteer Week we want to end on a high note and feature a group of amazing women who share Made by Momma’s purpose and with whom we have formed an amazing volunteer community network. The Kinette Club of Calgary is a group of 40 women dedicated to serving the community’s greatest need and who provide community service work primarily for causes that include women and children.  The Kinette Club of Calgary has been involved with Made by Momma for the past three years.

The Kinette Club of Calgary first found Made by Momma according to Kelli Pollock the current club president because “we were looking for a service project to do. We liked the idea of preparing meals that we could do as a group, have fun, and know we were giving back to the community.”

As a group the Kinettes have cooked many meals for MBM families “we cook about 3 to 4 times a year for Made by Momma making hundred of meals each time”

Their efforts have extended beyond cooking to helping us fundraise. They chose MBM for the second time as the charity of choice for their Golf for Girls Annual Charity Classic Tournament and they have recently partnered with us for MBM’s Helping Our Northern Neighbours project.

Even though the Kinettes have been very involved with Made by Momma; according to Kelli her personal favorite way to give back is the annual golf tournament “Golf for Girls – because it provides a great opportunity for women to network as well as provides a great amount of resources for Made by Momma.”

Kelli believes that Made by Momma is a much-needed organization because “it’s one charity we can all think of time we could of used or knew someone that could of used Made by Momma and their services. MBM really looks after the people who slip through the cracks and that don’t fit in the traditional aid charities.”

“This diverse and wonderful group of women have spent time in our kitchen baking, cooking and packaging meals for our families, they have volunteered at our events, they have helped out with our Adopt-a-Momma program by donating needed items and more recently has chosen MBM as the charity of choice for their annual Golf for Girls Tournament for the second year. We want to thank them for their support over the last year and look forward to their continued involvement.” – Trena, Made by Momma Board Member.

Thank you the Kinette Club of Calgary for being a partner MBM can always count on. We appreciate all the support you have given us and we are looking forward to many more years of accomplishing needed community work together.
Ron L

Ron L has been volunteering with Made by Momma for the past 8 months. After getting a liver transplant, Ron was told he couldn’t do any work that required heavy lifting. Ron originally heard about MBM through his previous job at Soup Sisters and once his sister-in-law joined MBM and filled Ron in on the organization, he knew it was the perfect organization for him.

Ron originally was interested in joining MBM because it allowed for him to follow his passion, which is cooking. However, he soon realized that there was so much more to MBM that makes it such an amazing organization. “The fact that everyone is a volunteer and no one is getting paid means everyone is happy to be here and wants to be here.”

Even though Ron mostly partakes in the chop squad program he has also delivered care packages to our clients in need. “I enjoy delivering packages immensely because it’s instantly rewarding. Also, I know that some of the meals I make are being given to the client. That is always a great feeling when you say to a client I hope you enjoy my cooking.”

Due to Ron recently being sick he has not been as involved with MBM as he would like. “I would like to get more involved with the day to day running of the organization. I want to work closer with Allyson and possibly sit on some of the committee meetings.”

Even though Ron has volunteered with many different organizations none can compare to his experience at MBM. “I have learned the importance of teamwork. There is no place easier to meet new people, new faces and new outlooks on life than at MBM.”

Ron is looking forward to being more involved with MBM in as many ways as possible. “It excites me to be here because I know when I walk out that door I know that all the meals I prepared that day will be helping someone tomorrow.”

“Ron is one of our fabulous volunteers – This man can cook! He has single handedly prepared many meals for our families. He is tireless and is willing to do whatever job is needed in the kitchen. As the Meals Coordinator, I am so pleased to have Ron as one of our valued cooking volunteers!” – Candis, Made by Momma Board Member.   

Thank you Ron for helping keep our fridges stocked and for always having a positive attitude.

Marilyn B

Marilyn B is not new to the volunteering scene. Before she found Made by Momma, she volunteered with many different organizations as well as volunteered and continues to volunteer with Girl Guides. She has also lead many employee-run volunteer programs with different corporations and gave a lot of her time to volunteering with seniors.

When Marilyn came across MBM she was initially looking for a program that would allow for her to make cards, cook and engage her elderly mother. Starting off bagging COBS Bread, she heard about the chop squad and was immediately interested in participating. Since her time with MBM, she has partaken in 7 different chop squads, and is looking forward to doing more. “It is just an awesome group of people. You can just see the work and the energy that is put into everything we cook. We never stop laughing and it is such a positive experience every single time.”

Due to Marilyn’s background in running volunteer initiatives in the corporate world, she is looking forward for MBM to increase the amount of corporations that help out. “I think that the idea of trying to increase the amount of corporate opportunities we have would be beneficial. Just being creative and trying to figure out how to expand that side of the organization.”

Marilyn has learned a great deal since her bread bagging days. “I have learned what could be accomplished with a small number of people and how creative and inventive people are. This is very evident in chop squads as we pull random ingredients and make amazing dishes from them.”

Overall, Marilyn believes that MBM is crucial in today’s society. “I think it is needed and important because our city is becoming more international. I know there are people who moved from other cities and countries and have no support system. I think it is very important that these people have a place to go that they can trust and is here for the right reasons.”

At the end of the day she is happy that she found an organization that she loves as much as she does MBM. “The last few months I have been with Made by Momma have been fabulous and I am looking forward to being more involved and continuing on and being a part of this exciting wonderful organization.”

“Marilyn is fairly new to MBM but in a short period of time she has made a significant contribution. She is always available to help out at the centre in the kitchen and to help with general duties. Marilyn brings her elderly mother in to chop veggies and they cook meals for our families. I can’t wait to see what the future brings for Marilyn and MBM as she has been a wonderful addition to our volunteer team.” – Marilyn, Made by Momma Board Member

Thank you Marilyn for your dedication, passion and wonderful meals. We are looking forward to you being more involved with our organization.

Barb and Laura 

Barb and Laura are known as the dynamic duo. Working together as a pair, they just started with Made by Momma in March. Coming from two very different backgrounds, these two have proven to be very engaged and involved in Made by Momma’s initiatives. Due to their partnership, we decided to interview and celebrate their volunteer contributions together.

Barb is a retired accountant and has a strong background in business. She found MBM through a friend’s Facebook page and fell in love with MBM’s mandate.

Laura is a former cancer survivor who has had cancer three times and is now living with congestive heart failure. Even with her health problems, she was still able to go to school and become a nurse. Although she can’t work full-time anymore, she has developed a passion for volunteering and giving back to the community. This pair has only been volunteering with us for a short time but their impact has been amazing as they have taken on many diverse projects and are planning to help out even more.

Barb and Laura were interested in helping out for MBM for similar reasons. Barb says she was attracted to MBM because “I was unable to have children of my own. Therefore, I feel through in-home visits and donating my time to MBM’s great initiatives, I can fulfill some of my own maternal instincts in caring for people.”

Laura was attracted to volunteering with MBM because “I have done a lot of work with children in the past and I am unsure if I can have children of my own. I love spending time with kids and I am a kid at heart.”

Both of these women have taken on the responsibility of organizing and managing the Pamper Me Momma’s gift bags. According to Barb, “the Pamper Me Momma gift bags for Mother’s Day project has been my favorite because it will hopefully bring joy to often forgotten deserving moms.”

Laura added, “a lot of these moms go unrecognized, I can’t wait to see how they react to receiving their gift bag this Mother’s Day.”

These ladies agree that MBM is a rewarding experience. According to Barb and Laura MBM is a much-needed organization because of “its client base. We are not just supporting low-income families, we are supporting short-term situations of adversity and very often those people would slip through the cracks. This is about helping to sustain families and moms that are facing life changing situations.”

They have both gained a stronger understanding of the difficulties of being a mom. Barb says, “I have developed more of an appreciation for what moms in adversity must go through. I never really thought about that before and I never really thought about what if a mom is sick or is recovering from something. They still have to be a mom. I have developed an appreciation for that and the importance of Made by Momma.”

Laura adds, “I have learned how much moms and families are in need of just the basic things. I have a big appreciation for what they do and how hard it is to get by and supply for their families.”

Barb and Laura sure have taken our little charity by storm! In just a couple of months they sure have made themselves at home getting involved and helping us with many different projects! They are a joy to talk to and volunteer with – they always put in 100% effort and do a fantastic job!” Allyson – Made by Momma Board Member

We want to thank these two wonderful ladies for their passion and their desire to help out. We can’t wait to see how the Pamper Me Momma’s gift bags turn out.

Interested in learning more about Laura’s journey? Check out her digital story at this link: https://youtu.be/9JtkcqJY8-k. Her story is truly remarkable.

Melissa G

Melissa G has been a part of Made by Momma since day one. Being a friend of Ashlee, one of the founding members who started Made by Momma many years ago, Melissa has been highly involved with organization. When first hearing about MBM, Melissa “loved the idea behind moms helping moms. When I started I was a new mom in a city where I didn’t know many people, meeting up with the other volunteers to sort through donations and just talk was such an amazing support for me.”

Melissa is happy she gets to volunteer for such a rewarding organization.  “I like being able to help moms in my community. It’s great working with a charity that you know is helping people close to you.”

Melissa’s work for MBM often occurs behind the scenes. “Most of the projects I work on are graphic design related and I would say I love doing them all. Design is my passion so using my passion to help MBM is the perfect way for me to help out. And every project I work on is fun and colorful – it’s not very often my clients like to use such bright bold colors.”

Even though Melissa is busy and has limited free time she enjoys the fact that she is able to help MBM from the comfort of her home. “It’s a great organization, full of amazing women who all have their hearts in the right place. As my kids would say being able to help those mom’s in need fills your bucket!”

Melissa is simply awesome and we really value her commitment to our organization. Her skills are definitely put to good use as she does the majority of our graphic design work creating brochures, posters, flyers, business cards, social media pieces and more. She’s always happy to help and go above and beyond even when we have short deadlines! We are so lucky to have such a great woman giving her time, energy and creativity to our charity!” Allyson – Made by Momma Board Member

Thank you Melissa for providing us with beautiful work to help publicize and raise awareness about our different events and projects.

Kari R 

Kari R has been a part of Made by Momma’s team for 5 years. Kari has dived into many aspects of MBM and has been a key contributor to our success. Kari joined Made by Momma when she sold her bakery business 5 years ago. “I wanted to still bake but didn’t have enough tummies to fill in my house so I found MBM to donate my baking to. After meeting Allyson and a few other ladies I knew this was the charity for me.”

She was interested in volunteering with Made by Momma because, “I liked the fact that it was volunteer based and promoted a grass roots connection with the community as opposed to getting lost in the corporate world of giving. I knew my time, my energy and my skills would be greatly utilized and appreciated.”

Through her time with MBM she had learned a great deal of lessons however, the one that stands out the most to her is “you can’t judge a book by its cover. You never know who may be in need of your services. It may be just a home visit or a warm meal or it can be a life changing step to make a families adjustment to Canada that much easier. Pay it forward is my motto – you never know when you may need a helping hand one day.”

Even though Kari R loves volunteering with MBM she wishes that an organization like this one was not needed in our society. “I wish it wasn’t needed but because we do have the demand in our growing city, it’s great that there is a short-term agency that can help a family when others may have to turn them away. Its not easy asking for help and when Made by Momma makes it easy for people to do it with dignity I’m all for that.”

“Made by Momma is a great organization that truly cares about the families it serves. It started with an idea and a few ladies getting together to make a difference and with the help of our team of leaders it has grown into a wonderful charity. I am blessed to be a part of it.” We are lucky to have you a part of our little family Kari.

“Kari is an amazing supporter of Made by Momma. She has been a part of our team as a volunteer over the past 5 years and has also held a board position. Her time and commitment has contributed to many of our successes in immeasurable ways. We’re lucky to have such a great woman to work alongside.” – Allyson, Made by Momma Board Member

Thank you for all your support and helping make sure our fridges is filled with nutritious products for our clients.

Val F

You can often find Val F cooking up a storm in our resource centre kitchen. Being a mother of two, and no longer working, Val found that volunteering helped fill a void in her heart. Val has been volunteering with MBM since February 2013 and first heard about the organization while volunteering with a social worker, “a bunch of our pamphlets came to her desk so I was like fabulous, I love to bake and I love to cook. When I first started with MBM I was a little timid about cooking with others then I got braver and started to join some of the group cooks and I absolutely loved it!”

Through her time with volunteering with MBM she has developed stronger kitchen skills from being able to work with fellow home cooks. She says that she was attracted to volunteer at Made by Momma because, “I liked the ideas of mothers helping mothers and the fact that was I able to bake and cook as those are two of my passions. I also love the camaraderie. MBM allows for you to volunteer without worrying about your skill set, all you need to volunteer here, is your time and your commitment.”

According to Val, Made by Momma is unique because we are able to provide immediate support for families facing many different crisis situations. “Made by Momma is a needed organization because we are directly helping mothers without there being this bureaucracy and all the forms and processes you have to fill out. There is a situation and we go to it immediately. It is an immediate response which can help mitigate a crisis situation.”

“It is always a delight to have Val in the kitchen. Her passion for MBM and the families we serve is evident in the effort she puts in when she creates “awesome” home cooked meals. I think the families that receive the meals Val makes feel the love they are made with!! Thanks to a very special person!!” – Marilyn, Made by Momma Board Member

Thank you Val for keeping our freezers stocked and providing your never-ending support to our organization.

Polina O 

Polina O is one of Made by Momma’s teen volunteers. Only being 17, Polina has a strong desire to give back to the community and to help out. Polina has been volunteering since November 2014 and heard about MBM through her dad.

Being in high school, Polina finds it difficult to partake in many MBM programs as many activities occur during the day when she is in school. Despite being in high school and keeping up with her studies, she was attracted to volunteer with MBM because of “all the different opportunities. MBM is not one of those places that you have to do one thing all the time. It gives you the opportunity to switch it up. Also, everyone is so nice so it makes it a fun place to volunteer.”

Polina is a regular volunteer at bread bagging donated by COBS Bread every week and has grown to love the program. “I really enjoy bread bagging. This is because I come in every week with the same people and we talk about our week. It is like a little family away from home.”

During her time with MBM, Polina has learned the importance of time management, “this year I figured out if I want to help out I have to make the time to be dedicated to the organization.” She has made a commitment to herself to come to bread bagging every week. By having a consistent schedule, it has allowed her to schedule her homework and extracurricular activities around this commitment.

Polina is hoping to help out even more in the summer once school is done and her schedule is more flexible. She wants to do in-home visits, as she believes that this part of Made by Momma is very important. “To me, I feel that just sending food to people is not enough. I want to do in-home visits as I like the idea of having the peer-to-peer support so the families are not alone.”

Polina believes that MBM is an important organization because “it helps the community and it can make people’s lives better in either a small or big way.”

“Polina is a great addition to the Made by Momma team.  She has become one of our regular weekly Tuesday night volunteers and can be counted on to pitch in and help in whatever way needed.  It is great to have such an enthusiastic young volunteer working to support our families and we look forward to having her get more involved as her school schedule permits.” – Leanne, Made by Momma Board Member

We are looking forward to having you more involved Polina! Thank you for your outstanding commitment to making Made by Momma successful.

Cindy R 

Cindy R is a mother of four grown children and has been volunteering for Made by Momma for a year and a half. Having four grown children, Cindy wanted to find something to fulfill her grandmothering needs. “I was looking for somewhere I could help children. I heard about MBM from the Calgary Foundation and it seemed to be a good fit for me.”

Cindy is involved with many aspects of MBM. You can often find Cindy either helping in the kitchen, sorting inventory or doing in-home visits. “I did in-home visits because I liked being more involved with the children themselves and provide the support for moms who might not have any otherwise.”

Cindy has helped out with many different events this past year including 12 Cans Til Christmas, Santa’s Workshop and the share tables. Her favourite activity was the Santa’s Workshop because “you could see the difference you were making to each of the moms. You were making a difference to their Christmas and their child’s Christmas.”

She mentioned that she is most looking forward to building a garage at the resource centre to provide more storage space in the future. This is not surprising as you will often find Cindy in our crowded storage space reorganizing and sorting new donations.

Cindy has been extremely involved with MBM and it is because of her dedication and determination that MBM’s inventory is as organized as it is. When asked why she believes people should volunteer with MBM she said, “for anyone looking for a rewarding volunteering opportunity, where you can be involved in so many different ways and have a big impact, Made by Momma is perfect. From bagging bread, cooking meals, delivering to families or becoming a mentor and friend to a family in a crisis situation, there is always something to help with. The grassroots nature of MBM is inspiring at every step!”

Cindy is the type of volunteer you want to clone because she generously gives her time and will do anything needed, including sorting countless boxes of donated baby items. ” – Wendy, Made by Momma Board Member

Thank you Cindy for all your support and dedication, we couldn’t do it without you.

 

#volunteerville #NVW2015 #MBMvolunteers