World #BabywearToThrive Day 2017

LMU BW to Thrive

April 23rd has been named World #BabywearToThrive Day 2017. This is an event sponsored by the non profit organization Lift Me Up to promote baby wearing for children with special needs.

From the Babywear to Thrive event page: “To celebrate our THIRD anniversary and continued successes, we are once again declaring April 23rd: World #BabywearToThrive Day 2017. Our goals for this campaign include: 1) To provide a platform for families who are using babywearing for developmental benefits to feel a part of a greater community; all linked together on one day under the same mission. 2) To increase awareness about babywearing for families who have children with special needs. 3) To spread the movement that babywearing to thrive is for inclusion of ALL children, and fostering the best developmental environment possible. ANYONE can #BabywearToThrive.”

Lift Me Up is a non profit organization, founded in 2014 by three mamas, whose mission is to provide carriers for caregivers of special needs children. More information on how to donate to this cause or to apply for a carrier can be found at http://babywearingtothrive.org/

BWI of Gainesville, FL is a proud supporter of Lift Me Up and their mission. For more information about the World #BabywearToThrive Day event, visit the Lift Me Up blog or Facebook event page.

Ring in the New Year as a Volunteer!

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HAPPY NEW YEAR! Do you have some resolutions that you need to fulfill? What better way to do that than to volunteer in the community? Babywearing International, Inc. (BWI) is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization whose mission is to promote babywearing as a universally accepted practice, with benefits for both child and caregiver, through education and support. Our chapter is a volunteer run, transient group. Babies eventually grow up (sad face), and volunteers are always moving into different leadership roles, moving on to fulfill career goals as we are a transient town, or simply have other responsibilities. We have A LOT of opportunities, with different levels of involvement to suit all kinds of schedules and capabilities.

 If you have a desire to become involved as a volunteer, a general volunteer is the place to start. These are current members of BWI Gainesville that help accomplish the logistics of the chapter’s public meeting efforts and/or other mission objectives. Examples of these vital tasks are: meeting check-in, greeting new arrivals, aiding lending library check-in and -out, managing social media updates, etc. Participating as a general volunteer can help give you an idea of whether you want to pursue a more “official” role in the group.

After getting your feet wet for three months as a general volunteer, you may wish to make a greater commitment to BWI of Gainesville by becoming a Chapter Support Volunteer (CSV). These volunteers serve in a variety of capacities within local BWI chapters and are associated with a committee. CSV’s are expected to attend the majority of committee functions, and attend at least two general meetings in a support role each quarter. Committees include: Administration, Communications, Education and Training, Fundraising and Donations, Lending Library, and Membership and Outreach. Below, we have compiled a general list of duties for each committee to see where you might be able to help most.

Administration Communications Education & Training
-Check-in at meetings
-Data entry into myTurn
-Tracking of social and educational event attendees (members, non-members, volunteers)
-1 blog post a month (topics vary)
-Weekly Instagram and Facebook posts
-Monthly chatter threads
-Set up a hootsuite profile
-Promotional/ reminder posts for meetings, workshops, and socials on both Facebook and blog
-Create graphics
-Become a VBE
-Current VBEs and ABEs commit to developing and leading a “section” in the new VBE training system
-Become an ABE
-Coordination quarterly workshop poll development
Fundraising & Donations Lending Library Membership & Outreach
-Plan fundraising events
-Coordinate volunteers at fundraising events
-Find grants to apply for
-Develop a grant for submission
-Pursue carrier or other babywearing related donations at the local/national/international levels
-Garner local donations for meetings and other events
-Library set up at meetings
-Library check-in and inspection at meetings
-Data entry into myTurn
-Repairing pulls in carriers
-Cleaning carriers
-Acquisition of carriers from a BOD-approved list
-Make suggestions for carrier retirement
-Interface with administration for library-associated fees
-Arrange late carrier return
-Greeting at meetings
-Send membership renewal emails
-Coordination of one social per month
-Distribution of educational materials (Doctor offices, Peaceful Paths, WIC, etc)
-Coordination of at least one educational outreach presentation per quarter
-Development of Ronald McDonald House babywearing education binders

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As you can see, the possibilities for how you may fit into this chapter of volunteers are endless. We have recently been able to expand and offer a second monthly meeting, which has been a great success. We would like to continue offering these expansions, and could use your help! Expansion efforts also include training the staff at Peaceful Paths and reaching out to Ronald McDonald House. More information on Educational roles be found here.

If you are interested in volunteering with BWI of Gainesville, please contact a BWI of Gainesville leader at gainesville@babywearinginternational.org.

 Happy New Year, we hope to see you soon!

 

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