Many parents are turning to each other, the internet, and social media for support and are finding information and advice overload. Mothership is a new way to find credible health information and support resources from diverse health professionals who are recent parents. It is a digital platform and community that helps parents cut through the noise on the internet and social media, and it bridges the gap between scientific expertise and relatable lived experience, between WebMD and mom blog. Platform functions include: a matching tool that matches parents with health professional “Partners” they can relate to like a dating app for parents and health information/support; browsable profiles and blogs of diverse Partners exploring health topics in the context of practical realities of parenting; Partner-endorsed resources and a customized search tool to find them; and Partner-facilitated support groups, interest groups, and classes.
The immediate impact is that parents will be able to more easily seek and find credible health information and support resources that speak to their unique situations, cultural backgrounds, approaches to parenting, interests, and preferences. They will also have access to a facilitated community that is grounded in empathy. Long-term potential impacts are improved maternal and child health outcomes and better health equity, meaning everyone has a fair and just opportunity to be healthy.
What I Will Do With $5,000
After 2 years of researching, developing, and testing this idea, we are on track to complete the technology and content for a full program pilot in Fall 2018. The planned 1-month pilot will focus on nutrition and healthy eating information and support from dietitian Partners. $5,000 will support 50 families in West Michigan to participate with priority for low-income families, 3 dietitian Partners to facilitate the platform, and 1 research assistant to help us evaluate pilot outcomes.