By Natalie Walter, AMOS Communications Coordinator
In the month of May, in many countries around the world we will take the time to honor and celebrate mothers. AMOS Health & Hope is so excited for Mother’s Day, because we love to celebrate and work with mothers in our work every day! We work with mothers because the window of pregnancy and birth is a critical time that affects the rest of both a baby and a mother’s life. And, women and mothers are vulnerable populations, especially in marginalized communities. We are honored to support mothers as they support their children – providing love, education, and care, and acting as their kids’ first teachers.
But, what mothers do is sometimes taken for granted. It is not an easy task. It is not synonymous with being a woman or something that requires no labor or effort. And at AMOS, we ask ourselves: what happens if a new mother is not informed, and does not have support? We think every mom should have the support, information, and resources to care for her children the best she can.
Very early on the morning of March 24, Ariana Reyes gave birth to her first baby, Elianor. “In the moment of giving birth, I felt like I could do it!” Ariana said about her experience. She explained that she felt well-prepared for pregnancy, birth, and parenthood by AMOS’ Pregnancy Support Group. One day earlier this month, when Ariana came back to the pregnancy group to visit with her new baby, she shared about her experience as a member of the group, and with giving birth.
Ariana lives near AMOS’ Samaritan Clinic in Nejapa, Managua, and she and several family members have been coming to AMOS’ Samaritan clinic for some time. “I’ve known about AMOS’ work for a few years now, since I’ve been accompanying my mom to clinic visits,” she told us. “One time while we were here, I saw an advertisement for AMOS’ free psychological care.” Utilizing these services was the first way in which Ariana became more integrated with AMOS’ community. When she became pregnant, she was glad to join AMOS’ Pregnancy Support Group, as well!
“I’ve loved it,” Ariana said. “I started coming to the classes last year, and I learned so much – not just about how to care for my baby, but also about things since the baby was first in my belly, about good nutrition and exercise.” Ariana felt especially supported by these resources, because this is her first time being pregnant and giving birth. “Before, I didn’t really know anything about this,” she shared.
Ariana appreciated not only the knowledge she gained from the classes, but the community of the support group. “It’s two hours a week to be distracted, to relax, to have fun,” she expressed. She feels that the group is both recreational, and innovative in helping pregnant mothers to learn. “I feel like this group is a family,” she said. “Everyone’s so nice.”
Ariana expressed how grateful she was to have been invited to a pregnancy support group right here in Nejapa. “It’s so easy to have had it so close to my home,” she added. “There are other groups available, but they are always far away and too expensive.”
As Ariana’s partner arrived to pick her and Elianor up from the pregnancy group, Carla Roa, the AMOS Support Group Facilitator, reminded her that now she could attend AMOS’ Early Childhood Development classes, to continue to learn more about the health of her family. We are so glad to have Ariana and her beautiful family as a part of the AMOS community, and like Ariana, we are so grateful to everyone who makes this possible!
Over the next month, AMOS Health & Hope is so excited to explore the roles of mothers in Nicaragua, share stories about the mother figures in our lives and communities, and continue to do everything we can to support moms in Nicaragua. Will you join us?
A donation to the AMOS Urban Program will make all the difference for new mom’s like Ariana. We are so impressed by all that moms in Nicaragua do for their children. Will you donate $50 – or any amount you can – to support them in this special month?