“Baby Shower” Themed Staff Meeting Benefits Maui Nonprofit

April 12, 2016, 2:12 PM HST · Updated April 13, 2:42 PM
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The Maui County Office on Aging had a “Baby Shower” themed staff meeting to benefit local nonprofit Mālama Family Recovery Center. Image: Frances Duberstein and Monica Morakis. Photo credit: Frances Duberstein.

The Maui County Office on Aging had a “Baby Shower” themed staff meeting to benefit local nonprofit Mālama Family Recovery Center. Image: Frances Duberstein and Monica Morakis. Photo credit: Frances Duberstein.

The Maui County Office on Aging held a “Baby Shower” themed staff meeting on Monday, April 4, to benefit local nonprofit Mālama Family Recovery Center.

Staff members set up decorations, made cupcakes and donated baby-related items like diapers, baby shampoo, diaper rash cream and toys to assist the organization.

Mālama Family Recovery Center is the only women-specific addiction treatment center on Maui and the only place where young children and infants can live with their mothers in residential treatment.

“When I invited my co-workers to bring a donation for this worthy cause, their generosity was truly humbling and overwhelming,” said the Maui County Office on Aging Community Living Program Coach Monica Morakis.

The Maui County Office on Aging had a “Baby Shower” themed staff meeting to benefit local nonprofit Mālama Family Recovery Center. Image: Frances Duberstein and Christine Sa'u. Photo credit: Frances Duberstein.

The Maui County Office on Aging had a “Baby Shower” themed staff meeting to benefit local nonprofit Mālama Family Recovery Center. Image: Frances Duberstein and Christine Sa’u. Photo credit: Frances Duberstein.

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“Giving anything to Mālama equals giving to your mom, your sister, your aunty or your best friend,” said Morakis.  “We all are interconnected in our Maui community and by taking care of ʻohana, we make Maui nō ka ʻoi.”

During the meeting former Mālama client Christine Sa’u shared how Mālama has changed her life and her relationship with her children.

Gifts donated will benefit infants of women in Mālama’s BabySAFE (Substance Abuse Free Environment) Program, which ensures pregnant women can access substance abuse treatment, prenatal services and intensive case management so they can get clean and give birth to healthy babies.

Staff members continue providing support and treatment once women give birth so moms can learn about healthy child development and access any needed community resources.

The Maui County Office on Aging had a “Baby Shower” themed staff meeting to benefit local nonprofit Mālama Family Recovery Center. Photo credit: Frances Duberstein.

The Maui County Office on Aging had a “Baby Shower” themed staff meeting to benefit local nonprofit Mālama Family Recovery Center. Photo credit: Frances Duberstein.

“We are grateful beyond words for these gifts,” said Mālama Clinical Director Dr. Lisa Ponichtera. “Any woman who has just given birth is obviously going to be stressed and need extra support, and that is especially true of women in addiction recovery. Donations like these allow our clients, most of whom have extremely limited financial resources, to focus on their new babies and health, instead of worrying about buying all the necessary supplies needed for newborns.”

The BabySAFE Program is supported nearly 100% through donations and is always in need of baby-related toiletries and other items.

To learn more, visit the Mālama Family Recovery Center online, or call Mālama’s Development Coordinator Frances Duberstein at (808) 579-8414, ext. 8102.

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