More than 100 families were generously served April 20 at the Second Annual Community Baby Shower held at Sierra Vista Presbyterian Church. The well-organized event is sponsored by area Mothers of Preschoolers (MOPS).
Over the last nine months, three MOPS groups, two in Oakhurst and one in Yosemite Lakes Park, have been collecting donations from their members and the congregation members of their respective churches (Sierra Vista Presbyterian, Oakhurst EV Free and Yosemite Lakes Community Church) for the event. Sierra Pines Church also supported the event.
Donations include both new and gently used items in excellent condition. Large item donations included six new car seats, two toddler beds, a rocking chair, five strollers, three baby swings, high chairs and six crib mattresses. In addition, the three clubs collected nearly 2,000 pieces of clothing in sizes newborn to 5 toddler, 2,500 diapers (60 packages), more than 10,000 wipes (100 packages) and 500 additional items including formula, diapering and nursing supplies, toys, blankets and bibs.
Members of the MOPS groups and church members also donated food to celebrate this annual event for families in the Mountain Area.
The outreach coordinator for the Sierra Vista MOPS group, Joy Judd, says the goal of the event was to inform local families about the MOPS organization and provide support to all families in the area.
"I moved to the area just a few years ago with my husband and our 18 month-old son," Judd said. "I was pregnant with our daughter and knew no one in the area. It was difficult to meet other moms in such a spread out community and MOPS helped me connect with other moms in my same stage of life. Any woman who is pregnant or has a child six years of age or younger is welcome to attend any of these group meetings."
Other organizations on hand at the Community Baby Shower in support of young families included First Five Madera County, Head Start, and Helping Hands, the Oakhurst pregnancy center offering free pregnancy tests and parenting classes.
"This is a great community event and a huge blessings to many families," Julie Weston of Mariposa said.
Daniel and Grace Fikkert of Sonoma County were visiting relatives in Oakhurst along with their one-year-old daughter Abigail, when they head about the Community Baby shower and decided to visit the event.
"This is a great idea," Daniel said. "Community people donating baby clothing and other items to share with other community members."
In addition to Judd, the Community Baby Shower committee included Taylor Olney, Shelby Collings, Sarah Lockwood, Angela Fairfield, Nikki Lewis, Kirstin Gist, Rebecca Smith and Danielle Simms.
Each MOPS group meets either once or twice a month and includes a meal, childcare and a speaker or event that will inform, inspire or encourage the moms who attend.
Details: Oakhurst EV Free MOPS, 9-11 a.m. first and third Tuesday of the month. The Sierra Vista MOPS. 6-8 p.m. the second Thursday. Yosemite Lakes Community Church MOPS, 9-11 a.m., third Wednesday.
The three groups will hold their last meetings in May before starting up again in September.