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Supporting New Parents and Building Community

After welcoming a new baby, new parents are particularly vulnerable and may feel physically isolated, experiencing symptoms of anxiety or depression and coping with sleeplessness and exhaustion. We know from research that forming social connections is critical to family wellness and infant mental health and development. Strong support strengthens parental resilience for the next milestone, challenge, or change, helps to create the bond between parents and babies, and shapes a baby’s healthy development.

More than 70% of parents surveyed in 2021 agree that PEPS helped them feel more confident in their ability to parent well. They were able to discuss the joys and challenges of parenting and adjusting to life with baby.

To read more about the impact of PEPS, check out our 2021 Impact Report and 2021 Annual Report.

We connected 2,996 parents 702 parents served in PEPS Groups through community partners and PEPS Network Partners. 278 PEPS Groups met virtually
We connected 2,996 parents in 2021. We reached new communities through partnerships and collaboration. We conducted an anti-bias review of our curriculum and leader training, adding in new group discussion topics such as social and racial identity development and mindful self-compassion.


All PEPS programs are rooted in the research-based Strengthening Families™ framework. This framework establishes five protective factors, or forms of support, as critical to family wellbeing because they build confidence in new parents, which in turn supports parent-child attachment and parental resilience:

    • Social Support
    • Emotional Support
    • Parental Support
    • Informational Support
    • Child Development Support

One of the ways PEPS measures impact is by asking parents about their levels of support in our pre-and post-group surveys. Our survey results consistently show that PEPS supports parents in feeling less isolated, more connected to fellow new parents, and more confident and competent about their parenting skills. Parents also report that PEPS helped them connect to local resources and learn about child development milestones.

For more details, view the PEPS 2021 Outcomes Summary.

Increased Support:

87% of PEPS parents met others who shared their challenges. 82% learned how to respond to their baby’s needs. 82% learned about emotional changes after parenthood. 80% learned about activities to support child development. 63% spent enjoyable bonding time with their baby.

Lasting Impact:

  • 74% experienced increased confidence by being in PEPS
  • 70% continue to meet with their group
  • 82% gained informational support

What Participants Say about PEPS

“Without PEPS, I would have been overwhelmed with all the information at once. It was also great to have the support system of other moms who had babies at the same stage as mine. The first months of being a mom were not what I had expected, so it was really helpful to have that support.”

“My PEPS group was a place I could be honest about everything from difficulty adjusting to parenthood to issues about going back to work. I found great support from people who were going through similar things at the same time.”

More parents share their PEPS experience in these additional stories.

Your Investment Makes an Impact

PEPS makes an impact for more than 3,000 parents each year. Your gift to PEPS is an investment in healthy families in our community and helps us train more leaders, continually develop our curriculum and provide financial assistance for parents who cannot afford the program fee. Learn more about making a donation or sponsoring PEPS.

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