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There are plenty of parenting books to go around, but for One by One Ministries, the human connection of a caring mentor is proving to be a great help to young mothers—more help than a book could ever provide.
“One by One started because of seeing the brokenness of families and what was happening in the communities and these churches wanted to do something about it,” said Director Cindy Grucholski. “They saw the first person of contact in these families was the mom, so they pursued a plan to engage them.”
The goal of One By One is to support and teach new mothers how to parent well. Mothers are matched with a mentor in their community and meet once a month throughout the first year of a child’s life. The curriculum includes lessons on health and safety, development of a baby, and most importantly, self-discipline.
“My favorite program we provide is the activities that teach things such as cognitive functions, languages and motor function,” Grucholski said. “There are activities that you can do that you don’t even realize help with your baby’s development.”
One by One is set up as a community model, in which mentors and moms meet wherever they like instead of meeting at a center. Grucholski is the North Texas Regional Ministry Director where the area she predominately services is Kaufman County. She works with referral agencies in the county who send mothers’ applications to her, and it is her job to find the right mentor that would be a good match.
“We want to impact the next generations,” Grucholski said. “We need to support, enable and empower moms to do a good job with that little bit of time she has with her child, and our volunteers and mentors are able to do that.”
For more information about volunteering or participating in the program, visit onebyoneusa.org.