First-time parent groups provide lasting benefits not only for families, but also for society as a whole.
- U.S. National Institutes of Health
Build your Village. Sharing experiences and learning from other parents who are at the same stage in the early parenting journey can have an immense impact on the social/emotional health of new parents.
This group experience strengthens families, increases family wellness, and prepares families to cope with life stresses by creating thriving community for new parents.
Village groups are fun and social, and each meeting includes time for sharing parenting highs and lows, time to focus on the babies' development, and a discussion topic. Topics include feeding, sleeping, child development, balancing work and baby, self-care and many more. Groups meet for 10 weeks in participants homes or at a central location (see descriptions) for approximately 1.5 hours per meeting.
REGISTER - UPCOMING NEWBORN GROUPS
Select a group session, time of day, and location that works for you. Daytime groups are typically one parent and their baby. Evening/weekend groups are typically one or both parents and their baby. Choose your start month based on your child's birth/due date. Infants should be 2-16 weeks when your group begins meeting.
*Groups must have at least 5 babies to hold a group. Groups that do not meet the minimum number of participants may be combined. Participants will be notified at least two weeks in advance.
Boise Newborn Group (Evening)
For new parents with babies born March- August.
Where: Meets at the Bown Crossing Library
When: Tuesdays at 6:30pm, September 4-October 9
Cost: Free, registration required.
Meridian Library District Newborn Group (Evening)
For new parents with babies born March-May
Where: Meets at the Meridian Library District - 1326 W. Cherry Lane. Meridian, ID 83642
When: Wednesday Evenings at 6:30pm, June 6 - August 8
Cost: Free, registration preferred.
Details on Newborn Groups
Newborn Groups General
Build your Village! Newborn groups are led by volunteer facilitators, and are for new parents to attend with babies 2 to 16 weeks old. Groups meet in the homes of groups members for 10 weeks, during the day with one parent attending (the same parent each week), or in the evening with one or both parents. Each meeting includes sharing parenting experiences from the week, a development topic, and a discussion topic. Meetings typically last 1.5-2 hours.
Who: One or Both Parents & Baby
When: Groups Beginning Quarterly
Where: Boise or Meridian
Time: 6:30pm (Weekend times may vary)
Who: One Parent & Baby
When: Groups Beginning Quarterly
Where: Boise or Meridian
Time: 10:30 am
Some parents debate between attending a daytime group on their own, or attending an evening group with a partner. Here are some of the key differences:
In Newborn Daytime Groups, one parent attends with the baby. Daytime groups will typically have 6-12 families. Daytime groups are typically one parent, and many participants like being in this environment and feel that it encourages deeper sharing, intimacy and emotion. Most daytime groups have a mix of parents who stay home, work part-time, or work full-time. Daytime groups plan outside activities that may include partners in order to expand the community that we hope to build.
In Newborn Evening/Weekend Groups, most parents attend with partners, and some parents attend solo as single parents or because an evening group works better for their schedule. Evening groups will usually be 5-8 families. Evening/Weekend groups will offer diverse perspectives, including working parents and non-working parents. Evening groups tend to be laid back and social, and families may benefit from the whole family belonging to the group. Evenings can sometimes be harder for the babies, who may be fussier during the meeting time.
Group Start Date
Select a group that begins 2-16 weeks after your baby's due date. Based on the experience of our mentor organization, this is an optimal time to join a group.
Registration & Fees
Register as soon as possible! This will help us match you with other new families, and make sure your group starts during the optimal age of your baby. When families register early, we know that there is interest in a group in a specific area. Fees are collected at registration. Newborn Group fees are $40 for 1 parent, and $55 for 2 parents.
Building Villages is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization and relies on a combination of fees and contributions. Your fees support our mission to offer these services to the Treasure Valley and ensure we will be able to continue to offer these services into the future.
We are committed to serving every family who wishes to join our community. Financial assistance is available equal to 25%-100% of program fees. If the regular fee is going to be a stretch for your family financially, please submit a request for financial assistance.
REFUNDS: If for some reason you cannot participate in the group you signed up for, we will do our best to help you find another spot. Refunds and group changes can be given with 15 days notice prior to the group start. Please email email@example.com if you have any changes or cancellations.
Newborn groups will be held in the homes of group participants on a rotating basis. It is not mandatory to host a meeting in your home, although we do highly encourage it if you can make it work. If you are unsure about hosting, we encourage you to sign up for a hosting date later in the session, so that you can get an idea of what hosting entails. Our groups are informal – people can sit on the floors or stand and rock their babies.
If for any reason you choose not to host in your home, you may host in a public place, such as a library meeting room, or you may choose to offer to help in some other way, such as organizing a group outing, or providing snacks for meetings at other members' houses.
Newborn Group Leaders are volunteers. After attending a Group Leader Training, Group Leaders volunteer approximately 4 hours per week for 10 weeks to lead Newborn Groups. Group Leaders come from a wide range of professional backgrounds and share the common goal of helping new parents to thrive and build community.
Building Villages provides an extensive curriculum to Group Leaders to facilitate topic discussions. Our curricumum comes from our mentor organization PEPS (Programs for Early Parent Support), that has been building and enhancing the content for over 30 years. Our curriculum from PEPS is a structured program based on the Strengthening Families Framework.
The true value and content of these groups is the learning comes from sharing information with other parents, observing other parents and their babies, and participating in the facilitated discussions that guide you in exploring your own values and priorities for your family. Our group model is based on peer support rather than instruction and your leader's role is not to be an educator, but a facilitator, guiding the discussion and providing resources. Every Group is filled with experts - you!
All families are welcome. Our Groups welcome all despite age, race, religion, income, education, or political views. Our families are connected by the common experience of parenting a new baby and living in the same general geographic area. Newborn Groups may include adoptive parents, single parents, same-sex parents, parents of multiples, multiracial families, both first-time and experienced parents, and more.