Recap: Celebrating Mothers 2021 was a virtual celebration of families’ resiliency

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Originally posted on April 12, 2021

“Although I cannot physically see you, I can feel the excitement in our virtual room, and I can see all of your beautiful faces with my mind’s eye!” That’s how Chief Executive Officer Marianne Fray kicked off the festivities on Thursday, February 25, 2021. The 17th Annual Celebrating Mothers Brunch was Maternity Care Coalition’s (MCC) first-ever virtual event, having taken the event online due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

For over 400 of MCC’s supporters, the 2020 event that was held in-person at The Bellevue at the end of February was likely the last event they attended before the news broke in the United States that life as we knew it was to change. This solemn fact inspired us at MCC to use this virtual Brunch as a celebration of families’ resiliency, to carve out space in our busy yet socially distanced lives to reflect on what champions our region’s parents truly are.

While this “brunch” looked a lot different, MCC supporters were still ready to rally for our programs and our clients. Over 300 supporters came together – through our event portal, YouTube stream, and Facebook live – to learn more about MCC’s impact over the last year. 12th St. Catering even joined us by sending “brunch boxes” to ticket holders’ front doors!

There were two incredible highlights of the event. The first was presenting the Strengthening Families Award to someone who declared, “we need to build an ecosystem that puts our families first.” That was none other than Philadelphia County’s own representative of the 192nd District, Rep. Morgan B. Cephas. Rep. Cephas is a longtime friend and ally to MCC, championing legislation that is family-, mother-, and child-first. We were thrilled to have Rep. Cephas join MCC’s Director of Policy & Advocacy Sara Jann and Co-Chair of the Celebrating Mothers Campaign Salima Pace for a Q&A session about what families need now more than ever.

The second highlight of the morning was getting to witness a video clip of MCC’s Early Head Start team members Kety Alvarez and Shannon Klotz conduct a virtual home visit with their client, Baby Georgie, and his father, Adam. We are often asked what happens during a home visit, and this 3-minute clip is the perfect way for our supporters to find out!

Amid this pandemic, our team has hoped to create spaces that spark joy, share inspiration, and to provide resources that help families continue to move forward. We hope our virtual celebration did just that. To everyone who was able to tune in, thank you – words cannot describe how grateful we are.

For anyone who was unable to tune in, the celebration was recorded, and it is still available here!

Last, but most certainly not least, thank you to all of our generous sponsors for making this possible!