Shalom Village Offers New Parents Support, Connections

Shalom Village Offers New Parents Support, Connections

Emma Howitt and Karin Lester connect at a Tot Shabbat event. Credit: Gloria Davis.

Shalom Village, a supportive social group hosted by Shalom Families and Jewish Family Service, provides opportunities for new moms and dads to find their Jewish village. Shalom Village is a place where first time parents can connect while experiencing the ups and downs of having a newborn.

“Shalom Village was something I wanted to start since I had a baby. When I reached out to Emma Howitt from Jewish Family Service to see if she was interested in partnering up with Shalom Families, Emma jumped onto the bandwagon and was excited to work with me on this project,” said Karin Lester, Shalom Austin Development Manager-Outreach and Engagement.

“When having a child for the first time, you don’t really understand how much your life takes a 360 until the baby arrives,” she added.

Shalom Village will be a way for new parents to learn together, go through first experiences, understand they are not alone and build a community of new friendships.

Sleep deprivation, hormone changes, and learning new routines are just some of the challenges new parents face. Shalom Village will host expert guests who can help answer questions and give education to demystify common issues during the first year.

Many families and couples move to Austin not knowing anyone. When they start a family, it can be a happy time, but it can also be lonely and confusing at times. Shalom Village is here to connect these families, because why go through parenting alone when you can have a Jewish village. ■

For more information about Shalom Village or to join, contact Karin Lester at karin.lester@shalomaustin.org.

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