The Virtual Pregnancy and New Parent Support Group has been in full-swing these past few months. Just recently one of our caseworkers had a support group turnout of nine parents. The Pregnancy and New Parent Program aims to bring together new mothers and fathers to create a safe space to connect and learn together. Our caseworkers help the parents feel like they are not alone with the difficulties they are going through and to be a “light in a time of darkness.”
Each of these monthly support groups run by our agency’s caseworkers has its own topic. Our caseworkers advise clients that taking care of themselves is very important. If any of our participants need clinical assistance or more specific support, Catholic Charities offers referrals to agencies in the area to help with the issues which affect them personally.
The caseworkers also organize guest speakers for the sessions. Many times they are board certified specialists in the medical field who provide professional insight on related topics. A recent meeting topic on postpartum depression was led by Ashley Parent, A.S., a senior clinical research coordinator at the Comprehensive Psychiatric Care in Norwich.
This special new parent group has helped so many already. One of the caseworker’s clients, Ms. B., is an expecting mother who was laid off from her job in June of 2020 due to the pandemic. She was in need of assistance. One of her close friends referred her to our agency.
Ms. B was in desperate need of help to prepare for her baby, which was soon to arrive. One important item she needed in particular was a car seat, which Catholic Charities provided. Upon receiving the car seat, Ms. B. was so grateful for the agency’s help she said, “You guys are a blessing. Thank you!”
The caseworker said Mrs. B was very humbled and thankful. “Her expression really showed the amount of gratitude,” the caseworker said. “Just seeing her appreciative reaction really meant a lot.”
Catholic Charities will also help this client by providing diapers, wipes and clothing as soon as the baby is born. Ms. B., along with other regular attendees, will join our next Virtual Pregnancy Group. The parents from the group and the caseworker are extremely excited to meet next month.
By Shannen Barnard