A Parent/Child Organization
It’s time to evolve into a nurturing society by prioritizing caring over profits. We urge EVERYONE (all genders/ages) to act as if the survival of the species is at the mercy of our choices—economic, political, and cultural.
In times of global pandemic and environmental upheaval, “Mother Up!” is a wake-up call and a courageous path to hope and healing.
The Mother Up! Initiative creates programs that connect mothers and amplify the voices of parents and caregivers because where the caregivers are supported, the entire community thrives.
Mother Up! the organization, is both the “child” and the new “parent” of Mama’s Comfort Camp, an international support network. At MCC, moms from around the world have been supporting each other 24/7/365 for the last 8 years. Our support forums are fertile ground for deep friendships and powerful collaborations, and the inspiring conversations and new ideas simmering within MCC deserve to be seen and heard and influence our culture. So we started creating self-expression programs to amplify the voices of mothers, and before long we realized that the name Mama’s Comfort Camp, our first program, was not a good match for the portfolio of programs we’re so excited to create. We began looking for a new name for a “parent” organization that would be the home of all the “sibling” programs (which is fitting, what with our work being all about parents, children, and siblings) suddenly the term Mother Up! declared itself emphatically. It’s not just a name for the organization, it’s an invitation to join our movement: we are here to usher the Maternal Evolution, and we urge everyone, mothers, fathers, children, people who don’t ever want to have children, absolutely everyone is encouraged to join us.
In 2016 we applied to become one of the projects of the Center for Transformative Action, A Cornell University affiliate with the mission to help create communities that are socially just, ecologically sound, and that work for everyone.
They support supporting system-changing projects with incubator and fiscal sponsorship services. “Our projects work to transform the structures, as well as the habits of mind, that produce inequities in our communities, country, and the world. Our projects employ pattern-breaking ideas to effect social change and address pressing social and environmental issues. Their courage, innovative thinking, and heart-centered approach show us what is possible.
CTA is an independent 501(c)3 organization affiliated with Cornell University since 1971. Because our projects are an integral part of our center, they qualify for charitable donations and grants available only to tax-exempt organizations. They also benefit from our mentorship, business services, and the credibility and accountability that come with decades of successful, progressive social change work.
What We Stand For
Vision: A world in which mothers and caregivers are deeply supported–emotionally, physically, and economically–creating a thriving and caring society in which EVERYONE is seen, heard, and held.
Mission: To normalize the struggles of motherhood, facilitate the asking (and the receiving) of help, amplify the voices of mothers and the influence of parents on policymaking, and improve well-being by fostering self-care, self- expression and a culture of kindness.
1. We can’t expect flowers to become fruit if we don’t water the roots. It’s not enough to ask: “How are the children?”. Thriving communities must not forget to ask: How are the parents?”
When we nourishing the parents we heal families from the inside out and communities from the ground up.
2. We believe in “ComFortitude.” This is what a healthy social fabric is made of. Community + Comfort = Fortitude. Resilience isn’t an individual quality, rather it’s the strength generated when community members come together to support and comfort each other.
3. The Time has come to usher in the Nurture Economy: An economic system in which the endless invisible work of sustaining families and communities is acknowledged, counted, and rewarded. This is essential for the survival of our species and ecosystem.
Our Values: Kindness, respect, sisterhood, inclusion and equity, generosity and sustainability, validation and safety, sovereignty and agency, creativity and self-expression.
- Gretchen Samter, Advisory Board President, Director, Contemporary Heroes
- Erica Marx, Past President, owner, Courageous Communications
- Cathy Bargar, Formerly Breastfeeding Coordinator, Tompkins County WIC
- Christa Nunez, Founder, The Learning Farm
- Hilary Dorsch Wong, SUNY Cortland
- Jen Kahn, Elemental Health & Wellness
- Jill Ayers, Cornell Childcare Center
- JoAnn Kingsley, Grassroots Festival Healing Arts Coordinator
- Tamiko Toland, CANNEX Financial Exchanges
- Tiffany Leubner, formerly, Lead Den Mother, Mama’s Comfort Camp
- Samantha Hillson, Tompkins County Health Department
- Sara Eddelman Clute, Cornell University
- Summer Killian, maternity nurse, Cayuga Medical Center
- Susie Hatch, formerly, The Law Guardian’s Office
Yael is a mama on a mission to remove guilt, shame, and blame from the parenting experience, in order to make room for connection, love, and (all the) rest. As a postpartum depression survivor, she became a mothers-support advocate and is passionate about reducing maternal isolation and normalizing the asking for help while building a community that provides it. A mother of two boys aged 11 and 16, Yael now lives in Ithaca, NY, she was born and raised in Israel, and came to the USA in her early 20s to go to art school in New York City. She then founded Design for Good, a creative agency that supported nonprofit organizations and sustainable businesses. She closed the agency when PPD made everything too hard to handle. When she healed and was ready to work again, Yael founded PPD to Joy which was followed by Mama’s Comfort Camp.
Photo Credit: Dave Burbank Photography
The Ignite Ithaca lecture from 2011, announcing the beginning of PPD to Joy:
Yael’s path to healing from PPD included therapy, medication, and support groups with Recovery International. She discovered that while Mindfulness meditations were not a good match for healing her anxiety, she can find relief through movement, poetry, and music, but her favorite form of meditation is making Mandala art, which literally feel like drawing kindness from the inside out. Check them out on Yael’s Mandala Relief Agency page.
Yael has written a few songs in collaboration with other Ithaca artists:
Always Love, with John Simon and Angie Beeler
My Love will Follow You: Yael and Angie Beeler singing: