By Jen Russo
Esme Infante Nii, founder of the Moms In Hawaii network, is on Maui to host a meet-and-greet to foster more inter-island participation. The even takes place at the Dairy Road McDonald’s in Kahului at 10:30am this Friday, Sept. 16.
“In the nearly five years that I’ve been building online communities for moms in the Islands, I’ve seen amazing things happen: Moms helping each other with priceless advice and real-life support, especially when it comes to the brand-new moms with their questions and anxieties,” says Infante Nii. “Moms raising thousands of dollars for charity. Moms turning their lives around with the information or connections they find within the local moms network, or giving others a hand up, or working to make their families and their communities better and stronger. By joining a network like this, moms become part of something bigger than themselves.”
Before Moms in Hawaii, Infante Nii was involved in the Hawaii.momslikeme.com effort for the Honolulu Advertiser, which was shut down when the paper merged with the Honolulu Star-Bulletin last year. Some of the services and topics offered on the MomsInHawaii.com site are building friendships, sharing support, talking about pregnancy, parenting, health and food, shopping, local articles and live chats with doctors.
Infante Nii says that the site is breaking ground with a new business model that strongly focuses on helping moms. It’s sponsored by big companies like Meadow Gold Dairies Hawaii, McDonald’s Restaurants of Hawaii and The Queen’s Medical Center (more such sponsors are expected soon). The site also displays exactly zero banner ads and runs no paid advertorials.
“Through our sponsorship, Moms In Hawaii is able to provide the content for the Keiki and Family Activity Page, which offers information about local events, listed by island,” says Linda Rosario, a McDonald’s Maui restaurant owner. “In addition to supporting Moms in Hawaii, we also continue to support numerous organizations that promote the well being of our families and keiki. Initiatives such as Children and Youth Day, which has grown to have celebrations on Oahu and Maui, has been one of our largest sponsorships for more than five years now. Other important initiatives we support for our keiki is the Hawaii State Library Summer Reading Program, Walk Wise Hawaii pedestrian safety campaign and the Fire Department’s Fire Safety Guide program.”
Moms In Hawaii’s ultimate goal is to bring mothers together, both online and “in real life,” and thus help them get the information and support they need to keep their families and themselves happy and healthy.
The first 25 moms to register to be a part of Moms In Hawaii will get a gift pack. Friday’s event will include a Ronald McDonald appearance, games and prizes. Kids are invited, of course. For more information, visit www.momsinhawaii.com, or follow them on Twitter (@_MomsInHawaii) and Facebook (Facebook.com/MomsInHawaii).