Helping mums across the state

Workers at St Kilda Mums sort through donated items.

By Melissa Meehan

It all started as a stack of baby goods dumped in a photocopying room at a maternal health service in Chapel Street, Prahran.

Local mum Jessie McPherson was told by her maternal health nurse that the donated goods were really needed in the community, but staff just didn’t have the time to clean them up and pass them on.

So Jessie took matters into her own hands.

She started a Facebook page, hundreds of items were left on her front porch and St Kilda Mums was born.

But don’t be fooled by the name, St Kilda Mums helps families across the state.

Their head office and main warehouse is now located in Clayton after outgrowing their previous home in St Kilda, and they have warehouses in Geelong and Ballarat – under the names Geelong Mums and Eureka Mums, respectively.

They now help 20,000 babies and children each year.

“We distribute across Victoria, even in the far corners of the state,” spokesperson Rochelle Cannington told Kids Today.

“So even though we are called St Kilda Mums, the name really comes from where it all started.”

Those who benefit from the donations are put forward to St Kilda mums from social workers and maternal health care workers.

“We leave it up to the experts, they come to us with referrals and requests from their clients,” she said.

St Kilda mums offers 66 products for those who need them.

But the hottest item, according to Rochelle, is prams.

“We can never ever get enough of them. We’re really fortunate to be able to get quite a bit about our stock donated, so last year 98 per cent of the things that we gave out were donations,” she said.

“But it’ll be a bit different this year because we couldn’t open due to the pandemic, we had to stop getting goods donations in for a little while.

“We did have to purchase a few more cots and prams and car seats than we usually would like in this current financial year but it was kind of out of our hands at the end.”

But despite the pandemic, the need does not end with big ticket items always needed, as well as linen and clothing.

The best way to donate is to get in touch with St Kilda Mums though their website www.stkildamums.org and make an appointment to drop off at their warehouses in Clayton, Geelong or Ballarat.

There are often local collection points too.

It’s the perfect way to move on your no longer needed baby things – especially after doing a spring clean.