You’d think that the ease of connecting online would be a boon for mothers’ clubs, but it’s been a blessing and a curse. Sure, clubs can communicate with vast memberships with a few taps and clicks, but valuable, in-person events can be thinly attended and real connections are sometimes hard to find.
This was a major topic at the Community Leaders Summit I attended a few months back. Leaders of local parents’ clubs talked at length about how to attract and keep members in a day when anyone can start a Facebook group. Not that there’s anything wrong with Facebook groups, it’s just that mothers’ clubs have the depth and scale to offer so much more to new parents than a lively message board.
I was really inspired by the enthusiasm of one of the conference organizers—Amourence Lee. She cares so deeply about parents’ groups and what they mean to our community that she co-founded an organization to help them. Her company, Parent Clubs on Board, was recently acquired by Care.com and aims to give parents’ clubs tools to help them run more efficiently. For example, why should every mothers’ club on the SF Peninsula individually create a catalog of local preschools for their respective preschool fairs? They shouldn’t. That’s why Parent Clubs on Board created an online platform that local clubs can use to disseminate information about preschools in their area.
And I love that Amourence and her co-founder Leisa McNeese created Parent Clubs on Board in living rooms across the Peninsula with their toddlers running around them. It heartens me to hear stories about moms coming together and building something in an unconventional way. I know my local mothers’ club has given me opportunities like this and I hope the club thrives long enough to do the same for many future generations.