NEW YORK — Expecting a baby is a special time, but for many it can be very stressful, especially during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and while facing the financial pressures of being a new mom.
One local organization is helping expectant moms who can’t afford a baby shower still get all the necessities they need for their new bundle of joy.
Katherine Garcia from Richmond Hill is expecting her first baby, a girl, in October. She’s excited but also anxious. Garcia has had a tough year. In April, she lost her job in a pharmacy because of the pandemic. Then in May, her entire family got COVID-19. In May, she lost her mother to the virus. With a baby on the way, Garcia didn’t know where to turn. Then, she heard about an organization in her neighborhood called the River Fund.
The River Fund has a special baby shower program for moms who need a little bit of support and baby supplies. They have what’s called a “baby room” in the basement of their headquarters. Monica Loja has helped run the program for the past six years. They have helped hundreds of moms from all across New York City and Long Island get whatever they need for their babies.
Before the COVID-19 pandemic began, they had big baby showers to celebrate these new moms. Now it’s all done one-on-one. They even deliver baby essentials to a new mom's home. Nancy Lawson works full-time helping match moms with whatever they may need before the baby is born and after they are born. Lawson says since the pandemic began, more moms need help. Right now, there are 20 other moms just like Garcia who are expecting and need support.
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