More on Mommy Connections from the President
I started Mommy Connections in November 2009 when I was on maternity leave with my first daughter, Madelyn. I had been through the provincial health care systems nurse-led “New Moms Network” and had really enjoyed meeting other new moms from my area of the city. Several months later, I found out that the New Moms Network program had been suspended due to needing the nurses and program rooms for H1N1 vaccinations. The program had been difficult to get into to begin with, so I decided I would start my own program out of a local church basement. Less than 8 weeks later, the first Mommy Connections Mom & Baby program ran in my community with 67 moms and babies! It was way too many moms, the babies chatter nearly drowned out the speakers and the room was packed, but it made me realize how great the need was for mom & baby programming as well as how many moms were craving connection. After that program, moms from all over started approaching me to find out how they could run a Mommy Connections class in their community.
Mommy Connections provides the platform that introduces moms to programs and services available within their neighbourhoods while connecting with each other. Our class types have expanded over the last 4 years to include Mom to Be, Mom & Baby and Mom & Tot. The weekly classes provide a unique learning opportunity as well as a fun way to bond with their babies and other moms in a social environment. The classes offer fun and interactive demonstrations as well as informative expert speakers on a variety of topics. In a Mom & Baby class you might learn from a pediatric dentist about baby dental concerns followed by a fitness demonstration while baby wearing. Some of our Mom to Be classes even include prenatal yoga each week! The goal of our registered classes is to connect moms in a non-mom’s group and potentially stressful environment while learning and having fun!
In the first 18 months of business, the company grew to include 16 locations in Alberta, British Columbia, Saskatchewan and Ontario; more than 2000 women went through our programs in 2011 and that number will grow to more than 5000 in 2013. We are proud to report that our programs are now offered in more than 22 locations across Canada. We view the 8 program weeks as an ‘informative icebreaker’ for all of the amazing connecting and support that will happen from week 9 and on!
The organization chart of the company has changed slightly over the years to include 2 Regional Directors that handle Eastern and Western Canada. Even after all of our incredible growth, the management team continues to be made up of a group of hardworking moms dedicating to educating and connecting moms in their communities while also providing an additional income for their families, working alongside their children. Mommy Connections has grown into an amazing family business!
Carol; Mommy Connections President & Founder
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We offer Mom to Be, Mom & Baby and Mom & Tot Programs in 22+ locations across Canada.
Leading experts prepare and inform the pre natal mom for pregnancy, delivery and beyond in a fun and social setting.
Engaging new moms and babies through an interactive and educational weekly program.
A uniquely structured weekly program offers a place for both moms and toddlers to play, learn and develop.
The program now includes more than 22 programs across Canada
About the Founder:
Carol McBee is the owner of two businesses dedicated to connecting moms. After graduating with her Bachelor of Commerce from the University of Texas at Arlington, Carol returned to her hometown of Edmonton with her husband and started her first business; Canadian Houses, a virtual tour and photography business working in the real estate sector. After running that business with her husband and working full time for the makers of COLD-fX as their Corporate Programs Manager, the McBee’s decided to start a family and began with their daughter Madelyn. In June 2010, Carol sold that first corporation to focus on her two new businesses; Mommy Connections Inc. & WECAN (formally known as Bossy Mama)
While on maternity leave in 2009, Carol created Mommy Connections; a post-natal program and new mom’s social network dedicated to educating, enlightening and connecting new moms. The company has grown to include more than 20 locations in both Canada and the US and now offers mom to be, mom & baby and mom & tot programming.
During the planning of the sessions and organizing of speakers, Carol began to meet so many amazing female business owners. It was then that she began to research what networking groups were available in Edmonton to female business owners. Carol missed the beneficial networking events that she used to regularly attend in her “corporate life” and wanted to create similar events to help women grow their businesses. WECAN (Women Entrepreneurs Connecting and Networking) was then born and officially launched in January 2010. The membership base stands strong at more than 180 members and has monthly events as well as several large events per year including iMedia and The Flaunt Tradeshow event.
The McBee Family recently welcomed their second child in January 2013; Carter Alexander.
Recent distinctions include 2012 Top 40 Under 40 Award, 2012 Alberta Chamber Small Business Award Nominee, 2012 Ernst & Young Entrepreneur Finalist, 2010 YWCA Women of Distinction Entrepreneur of the Year, 2010 E-Women Network Nominee for Emerging Leader Award, 2010 Fierce Mom of the Year: Rising Nominee, 2010 Top 20 under 30 Sizzler Winner, 2010 Top 40 under 40 Nominee and 2010 RBC Canadian Women Entrepreneur Awards Nominee, listed as one of Canada’s top 50 Mompreneurs by Mompreneur Magazine and winner of the 2010 Canadian Committed Entrepreneur Award.