We are back with another edition of Main Street Moms on the Move! Today we are featuring three moms from the Triad who are all fabulous in their own unique ways. Please meet Carrie, Jill and Anitra. All three are mompreneurs working to make a difference in the lives of children, moms, and women in our community. Take a read – I know you’ll be left inspired!
Just two years ago, a young mother working as a parent educator in the Surry County Health and Nutrition Center conducted a home visit with a single mom of three children. To her shock, she discovered the mom was using old t-shirts as diapers because she couldn’t afford to buy diapers. Thinking this was an isolated case, the parent educator reported the incident but found out such cases exist every day. Sometimes these underprivileged moms wash out and reuse disposable diapers. After careful research, the parent educator discovered very few organizations offer or donate diapers to parents in need, and there were no diaper banks in the state of NC. Knowing this was a large void, the parent educator contacted her friends, one being Carrie Scott of Pfafftown, to enlist their help. Not too long afterward, Piedmont Diaper Bank was born.
Today, Piedmont Diaper Bank operates like a food bank. Carrie is in charge of bringing in the diapers through diaper drives, and her business partner, Valerie, distributes them to partner agencies. Together, Carrie and Valerie manage the bank’s day-to-day management, financials, marketing and speaking engagements. To date, Piedmont Diaper Bank has collected over 50,500 diapers which have helped 2,137 local babies!
A mother to Alex (7), Mason (5) and Zach (2), Carrie also volunteers at her sons’ schools and teaches Sunday school. Just recently, Carrie’s diaper bank was approached by Newborns in Need, a national non-profit organization based in Pfafftown. The two groups share similar missions, and Piedmont Diaper Bank is now a local chapter of Newborns in Need which has over 60 chapters across the country.
Says Carrie, “For many people in our area diapers are a ‘luxury.’ Imagine having to choose between food for family and diapers for your baby. That is an unfathomable choice and one that mothers in our area should not have to make. We can change this. Host a diaper drive, tell your friends about Piedmont Diaper Bank, make a donation.”
Greensboro native Jill Reynolds and her husband, Mark, have four children: Carson (9), Jonathan (7), AnnaGrace (5) and Lily (2). About one year ago, Jill and Mark, an orthodontist with Reynolds Orthodontics, started a local chapter for Smile for a Lifetime serving Guilford County. Through Smile for a Lifetime, Mark treats children at no cost, while Jill serves as the president of the chapter’s board, a group of men and women who are fully engaged in getting the word out about Smile for a Lifetime as well as selecting kids who can benefit from the program.
“These are great kids who are working hard in school, have great attitudes, but their smiles prevent them from reaching their full potential. For various reasons, their families are unable to pay for braces…so we help give them a beautiful smile and the confidence that comes with that,” explains Jill. She says the biggest challenge is finding the kids who can benefit and meet the financial guidelines. Their goal is to treat 12 kids each year. For more information on the chapter application requirements, click here.
In addition to her role with Smile for a Lifetime, Jill volunteers at her children’s schools and her church, and sits on the board of the alumni association for Camp Crestridge. “I’m always looking for opportunities for our entire family to serve, whether ringing the bell at the red kettles, helping load boxes of operation Christmas Child shoeboxes, cooking a meal for a homeless shelter, or collecting items needed at the Newcomers School. There are so many needs right here and so many great ways to get involved. It’s important to us for our kids to be generous with their time and resources. There is such joy in giving.”
Anitra and her college sweetheart husband, Brad, got off the plane from their honeymoon 12 years ago and drove directly to Winston-Salem. They have lived here ever since and are proud parents to Cooper (7) and Turner (3). With her children growing, Anitra did a little soul-searching and decided she was ready to add a new challenge to her plate of wife and mother. Last May, her mother introduced her to Mainstream Boutique’s clothing line. Anitra loved it so much that she hosted her own home party. The event was a success – and knowing a Charlotte franchise of this business was for sale – Anitra and her mother decided to take a leap and take over the franchise. It’s been a dream-come-true for both of them.
Anitra calls herself more the “creative” one in the partnership with her mom (handling all the buying, events and shows), while her mom manages the financial side of the business. Anitra and her mom have been in business just five months, but they’ve participated in numerous events; successfully placed their line at d.usher salon in Winston-Salem, and in two boutiques near Charlotte; and they’ve hired a team of three sales representatives.
Last July, Anitra and her mom visited Mainstream Boutique’s flagship store in Apple Valley, MN, and were trained by the inspiring and empowering woman who started it all. There are 18 brick and mortar stores for Mainstream Boutique, but Anitra’s franchise is the only one that operates without an actual storefront (for now, at least!). And unlike other home-show clothing lines, Mainstream Boutique’s line is not predetermined; Anitra does all the buying herself and can change it up whenever – and however – she sees fit.
On Tuesday, November 29, Anitra’s Mainstream Boutique line will be at Arts for Life at 305 N. 4th Street in Winston-Salem from 11 am to 6 pm. You can view items in advance on her website, and “like” her Facebook page to stay current with new products and show announcements! (Photo Credit: Angela Bailey with Your Sweet Pea Photography)