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Momma Moments

An Award-Winning and Leading Practice Program

The work being done by Choices for Youth’s Momma Moments team was recognized last year with two outstanding achievements – the program model was acknowledged as a Leading Practice by the Health Standards Organization and was awarded the Youth Homelessness Prevention Award by Making the Shift. Momma Moments is a referral-based program built on a peer-to-peer model that works with young moms, pre-and-post natal, to produce better outcomes for them and their children. While the Momma Moments program has always seen its fair share of success stories, these two recognizable accomplishments further validate the great work being done by this team.

Jeannie Piercey, Momma Moments and Family & Natural Supports Program Coordinator

“Where Momma Moments is a peer-to-peer driven model, that is the best outcome when you have families who are struggling and parents who are going through a lot. That peer-to-peer model, it has been proven that when you’re going through the rigours of parenting, who better to support you than people who are going through it as well? It is supported by Program Facilitators, but it is a peer-to-peer model. Moms supporting moms.”

A Leading Practice is an innovative, people-centred, evidence-informed practice that has been implemented by teams in an organization, and that has demonstrated a positive change related to safe and reliable care/service, accessible and appropriate care/service, and/or integrated care/service. It is no surprise that the Momma Moments model was accepted as a Leading Practice by the Health Standards Organization. Momma Moments is built on a peer-to-peer model that meets moms where they are and is innovative and creative in how they provide care. The Momma Moments team emphasizes the importance of continuity of care for their moms, helping them access the health services they need before giving birth and through delivery, and ensuring that their children receive appropriate post-natal follow-up with a consistent medical team. Continuity of care ensures that mothers are supported throughout their pregnancy and their children are receiving early referrals and interventions whenever there is a need.


Momma Moments recently partnered with the Janeway Children’s Health and Rehabilitation Centre to enhance their ability to provide support and continuity of care to young mothers in NL. Being recognized as a Leading Practice by the Health Standards Organization is a wonderful acknowledgement of Momma Moments’ approach and the effectiveness of its team in producing better outcomes for young mothers and their children.

Jeannie Piercey, Momma Moments and Family & Natural Supports Program Coordinator

“It’s hard sometimes to measure the baby steps along the way of what it takes to keep a family stable. Being part of their journey, through the good and the bad and challenging, the sad and happy times, I think is a lot of what keeps staff motivated and keeps them going. It’s nice to have the validation because oftentimes we shift what we do based on what is working. I think having an organization that is creative and innovative and can do that really speaks to a lot of the values of the Momma Moments team.”

Momma Moments was one of two recipients of the 2022 Making the Shift Youth Homelessness Prevention Awards. This award recognizes the efforts that Momma Moments is making to support families by providing affordable housing options and breaking down the barriers to them accessing health services. Momma Moments connects with moms before, during, and after childbirth, providing them with the wrap-around supports that they need to maintain family stability.

Many Momma Moments program participants have children who are In Care or at risk of apprehension. The existing social services system is creating barriers to success for these families. Families that rely on social services like the Child Tax Benefit as their primary source of income to maintain their housing would lose those benefits if their child entered into Care. It is also the case that a parent who can provide stable housing for their child is at a much lower risk of losing care or custody. This dynamic creates a vicious cycle where a mom could be unable to maintain stable housing because of their income, and also unable to have their child returned to their care because they cannot maintain stable housing. Momma Moments works with these families, providing the affordable housing and other supports they need while also doing preventative work to stabilize them and keep them out of this cycle. The Making the Shift Youth Homelessness Prevention Award validates this work, but there is still so much more to be done.

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