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In the quiet corners of our community, a harsh reality unfolds every day, silently affecting the futures of our most vulnerable: children growing up in under-resourced households. The insidious grip of poverty not only restricts access to basic necessities but also casts a long, dark shadow over the developmental journey of a child, causing a range of long-term cognitive, emotional, and health-related problems.  

At Wellroot Family Services, we understand how critical it is to support a new mom and her baby in those early years. Wrapping a new mom and baby in love and support can equip them to thrive and achieve their God-given potential. 

Standing in the Gap 

Maylin was alone when she gave birth to her first-born daughter at a local hospital in January 2023. She was single, with no family and no safety net, when she learned that she was pregnant. Despite the long hours on her feet and being fully pregnant, Maylin had not been in her job at a food processing plant long enough to accrue maternity benefits. 

After giving birth, the hospital referred Maylin to Wellroot’s Healthy Families North Georgia™ program, recognizing that she was all alone and desperately needed help. Healthy Families is one of Wellroot’s evidence-based family support services. Once enrolled, a mother is assigned a support specialist to walk alongside her, helping to cultivate a nurturing parent-child relationship, promote healthy growth and development, and enhance family functioning. 

After meeting Maylin and assessing her situation, Laura, a Wellroot family support specialist, immediately jumped in to help Maylin address the financial crisis that was forcing her to choose between paying rent versus buying food and baby formula each week. She connected Maylin to local food banks, which helped to alleviate food insecurity while they worked together to navigate the complexities of applying for WIC benefits. 

“During one of our sessions, Maylin told me she had been told she didn’t qualify for WIC,” said Laura. “Based on my experience, I knew that couldn’t be right. So, I sat down with her at the computer and helped her find the qualifications online. Once we confirmed she would qualify, I coached her through the application process. All those forms can be so overwhelming and confusing.” 

Before the WIC benefits, Maylin was living week-to-week, depending on her single income from the plant and subletting the other room in her home to cover rent and food. But this week-to-week existence came with a penalty fee, making it even harder to pay her bills.  

With Laura’s guidance, Maylin qualified for WIC, a lifeline she desperately needed. Using WIC to purchase baby formula and other necessities, Maylin finally had enough money to pay her rent monthly, eliminating the weekly penalties and ultimately unlocking an extra $130 every month. 

“Once Maylin was able to cover her rent, she immediately started a savings plan with the $130,” said Laura. “She is such a wonderful mom. She wants to provide a good life for her baby, and she’s working so hard to make ends meet.” 

Embracing Motherhood 

Maylin embraces the responsibility of motherhood, enjoying every moment with her healthy baby girl. She is determined to create a bright future for them as a family, setting a personal goal to buy her first car so she’ll have reliable transportation to work and child care.  

Laura continues to walk alongside Maylin, encouraging and supporting the blossoming parent-child bond between Maylin and her daughter under the guidance of the Healthy Families America® model. During a recent visit, Laura witnessed a beautiful rite of passage shared between mother and baby. Maylin held her baby’s tiny hands as she was determined to take her first steps, a milestone that echoed her mother’s strength.  

Today, Maylin has hope for security and stability for herself and her child. Through the generous support of Wellroot donors and philanthropic partners, Maylin now has a community that can help fill the gap and ensure a healthy future for mom and baby. Thank you for helping us be the hands and feet of Jesus Christ in our community!

Help Us Put Childhood First This GivingTuesday

At Wellroot Family Services, we understand how critical it is to support children, and their families, in those early years. The love from a village and a community approach can support and equip families, helping their children to grow, and achieve their God-given potential.

Through the generous support of donors like you, we offer home visiting, parenting education, and family therapy to support to families along their journey, equipping them with the knowledge and skills to better support their child’s development, even in the face of economic challenges. And when a child is not able to live with their birth family, we provide safe and loving foster homes. This year, our goal is to raised $85,000 on GivingTuesday. Help us put childhood first by donating today.

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