A group of moms have stayed connected since their kids were babies 15 years ago. Through the group Women Helping Women South Delta, they help contribute personal care items for women escaping abusive relationships. The women, who met at the Langley Health Clinic in 2003, got together for a group hug at the Brookswood Starbucks recently.                                 Troy Landreville Langley Times

A group of moms have stayed connected since their kids were babies 15 years ago. Through the group Women Helping Women South Delta, they help contribute personal care items for women escaping abusive relationships. The women, who met at the Langley Health Clinic in 2003, got together for a group hug at the Brookswood Starbucks recently. Troy Landreville Langley Times

‘Mommy’ group happy to help women escaping abusive situations

Moms who met 15 years ago doing what they can to help women in transition

There are women and their children who have had no choice but to flee quietly in the darkness of night.

There’s no time for packing, or in-depth planning.

They have nothing, but in a way, they have the most important thing — freedom from an abusive relationship.

Led by Denise Sheridan, a group of moms who met in Langley 15 years ago are dedicated to helping these women and their kids.

Sheridan and Denise Lundstrom, Julie Bergen, Lorri Sowerby, Joanne Precious, Christy Yap, Debbie Kruse, and Roxanne Brown crossed paths at the Langley Health Unit after all of them had babies.

A bond quickly formed.

“It was just moms with new babies, learn how to breast feed, take care of your baby,” Bergen explained. “

“We were all just there and clicked and kept going until the health nurse said, ‘You guys have to go form your own group, now. Other moms are coming in.’”

They exchanged email addresses and stayed connected since then.

Initially the babies were in strollers, which was quite a sight when they were all together.

“We would be like a gang of eight moms walking down the street with all of our strollers,” Bergen said. “People would comment on how great that was, that we were all connected.”

Once the kids grew to toddler age, the moms would have pumpkin patch parties.

Now the children are older and don’t join their moms during their monthly get-togethers.

“We still need each other, through all of these years, through the elementary school, the teenaged years, the dating years, so I was like, ‘Why not have them over at my house?’ Why not do this where we can support each other once a month?” Bergen said. “So that’s what we do.”

But there is more to the story than moms staying connected for a decade-and-a-half.

Sheridan is involved with Women Helping Women, a South Delta-based group that helps women escaping abusive relationships.

“A friend of mine started collecting personal care items for women on the street,” Sheridan explained.

“This was about seven or eight years ago and it just expanded and expanded and expanded. So now, I’ve approached this mommy group to start putting things together — shampoo, razors, soap — and these items go out to transition homes, recovery homes, shelters, throughout Delta, Surrey, Langley, Mission, Abbotsford… everywhere.”

After donating for several years to an organization that made baskets and distributed in the Downtown Eastside, the group of friends from South Delta decided to bring the spirit of giving at Christmas closer to home to Ladner/Delta/Surrey.

In 2010 they put together 52 baskets filled with personal care items and in 2015, huge support from friends, family, and the general community helped them deliver over 500 gift bags to facilities from Delta to Abbotsford and Mission.

Sheridan said the recipients receive “big bags” full of personal care items.

“A lot of time, when they are going through a stressful time in their lives, especially during the holidays, they forget about themselves,” Sheridan said. “They put all of their energy into taking care of their children, making sure they have a safe place to live, they’re fed, and they often put themselves at the very bottom.”

This year, Women Helping Women South Delta’s goal is to fill 700 bags with personal care items, including pyjamas and jewelry.

Closer to home, the ladies who met in Langley in 2003 collect items from family, friends, and co-workers and give them to Sheridan for distribution.

“They bring it to me and I pass it on,” Sheridan said.

On Dec. 6, the Women Helping Women South Delta group sorted, bagged, and distributed the items.

“Some of these transition homes send a representative and they collect (the bags),” Sheridan said. “Some of them don’t want people to visit or don’t want them in the homes, because it’s a really tough time for these women.”

Brown said donating to this cause is important because of how little the women escaping from an abusive spouse have in their possession when they leave.

“If a woman is in trouble and has to leave a house with her kids, she’s leaving with nothing,” Brown said. “She’s got nothing.”

Bergen noted, “and all of their energy is focused on keeping their children safe and finding a safe place to be, and they forget about themselves. So we want to make sure these women are taken care of.”

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

The development plan for a proposed Willoughby building showing a possible library site. (Pollyco/Special to the Langley Advance Times)
Langley Township council says no to delay in considering Willoughby library

One councillor called for a system-wide review before making a decision

Langley sister Shannon Obando, 35, and Jen Spier, 29, started Hope in a Box, which features items from local small businesses, to fundraiser for non-profit Hope International. (Special to Langley Advance Times)
Langley sisters Hope in a Box fundraiser: local products with global impact

All proceeds will benefit non-profit Hope International

Christian Burton is not a cold-weather kind of athlete, but he took the plunge anyway, getting dunked to help raise funds for Special Olympics. (Special to Langley Advance Times)
VIDEO: Langley’s Christian Burton takes the plunge for Special Olympics

A freezing dip in a kiddie pool to raise money for athletes

A new Fraser Valley food hub in Abbotsford will include shared kitchen space that can be accessed by small and medium-sized businesses. (Stock photo by Robyn Wright from Pixabay)
Almost $2M to support new Fraser Valley food hub in Abbotsford

Project being developed by District of Mission and Mission Community Skills Centre

COVID-19 virus. (CDC photo)
School records 2nd COVID-19 alert this week, while employee at Langley grocer tests positive

Families of H.D. Stafford Middle were also notified on Monday

Dr. Bonnie Henry talk about the next steps in B.C.'s COVID-19 Immunization Plan during a press conference at Legislature in Victoria, B.C., on Friday, January 22, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
456 new COVID-19 cases in B.C., 2 deaths

Since January 2020, 78,278 have tested positive for the novel coronavirus in B.C.

A health-care worker prepares a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine at a UHN COVID-19 vaccine clinic in Toronto on Thursday, January 7, 2021. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette)
Vaccinating essential workers before seniors in B.C. could save lives: experts

A new study says the switch could also save up to $230 million in provincial health-care costs

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

The late Michael Gregory, 57, is accused of sexually exploiting six junior high students between 1999 and 2005. (Pixabay)
Former Alberta teacher accused of sexually assaulting students found dead in B.C.

Mounties say Michael Gregory’s death has been deemed ‘non-suspicious’

A woman boards a transit bus through rear doors, in Vancouver, on Friday, March 20, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
TransLink slow to reveal crucial details about ransomware attack, says union

Union says company took months to admit what info was stolen, including SIN and bank account details

According to a new poll, a majority of Canadians want to see illicit drugs decriminalized. (THE ASSOCIATED PRESS)
Majority of Canadians think it’s high time to decriminalize illicit drugs: poll

More than two-times the B.C. residents know someone who died from an overdose compared to rest of Canada

Photograph By @KAYLAXANDERSON
VIDEO: Lynx grabs lunch in Kamloops

A lynx surprises a group of ducks and picks one off for lunch

(Black Press Media file photo)
B.C. residents can reserve provincial camp sites starting March 8

B.C. residents get priority access to camping reservations in province

Most Read