What is a CoolMom?
Why Join a CoolMom Group?
What is a CoolMom Group?
How do I Join a CoolMom Group?
How do I Start a CoolMom Group?
How do I Keep It Going?
How do I Take CoolMom to School, Work, and Play?
Current CoolMom Groups
To join one of these groups, contact the group's Coordinator below.
Bainbridge Island: Sonja Fritts at email@example.com
Greenwood: Brooke Doyle at firstname.lastname@example.org, or Carrie Barnes at Carrieb2008@gmail.com
Magnolia: Kirsten Bergstrom at email@example.com
Mercer Island: Nancy Weil at firstname.lastname@example.org
West Seattle: email@example.com, and for community inquiries contact Laura Elfine at firstname.lastname@example.org
Yakima: Elise Wakefield Cardenas at email@example.com
Don't see your neighborhood Group? Start one using these simple steps.
Why Join a CoolMom Group?
Joining CoolMom brings you together with other like minded moms, dads, grandparents, aunts and uncles who care about our children's future and our planet. Local neighborhood groups bring members together to talk about ways to take action in their homes and communities while providing the important social support and sharing that helps motivate and educate one another. Our groups are unique for several reasons. We:
- focus solely on how to live more sustainable lives
- create action events that support the local economy, reduce our carbon footprint, and support a healthier environment
- provide a social outlet for moms and families to get support and take action
- provide leadership opportunities
What is a CoolMom Group?
CoolMom Groups are local neighborhood groups made up of moms, dads and other like minded individuals who meet on a regular basis to discuss ways to educate themselves and take action on the topic of climate change.
CoolMom Structure. A group typically has one or two Coordinators that help support the group and keep the conversation and topics focused on climate change. The Coordinator(s) sends out reminder emails and sets a topic for the regularly scheduled meeting.
CoolMom Location. CoolMom groups are located in proximity to where members are living. Meetings take place at neighborhood libraries, coffee shops, community centers or other locations that don't charge for meeting space. We encourage members to form groups in their communities in order to impact, support and take action in their local community.
How do you Join a CoolMom Group?
To Join a CoolMom Group sign up on our home page to become a CoolMom member and receive email alerts. Find your neighborhood group here. Can't find a group in your neighborhood? Start your own by following these simple steps below. Or, take CoolMom to your existing group by following these guidelines.
How do you Start a CoolMom Group?
Here is what you need to start:
- A couple of great moms, dads and/or family members. Old friends and new.
- A Coordinator(s): Someone to be a contact person and to keep everyone on the same page. See our meeting agenda for tips.
- A Time: Plan a regular time to meet, this can be monthly, every other month, quarterly, etc., depending on the needs of the group.
- A Place: Close to home. Fewer emissions, more community.
- Friendly reminders: The coordinator or host sends out a reminder prior to your gathering.
- Inspiration. Stay focused on climate action and spread action ideas in your group. Use our 10 Things Families Can Do and check out our Green Tips for ideas.
- Remind new members to pay their $10 annual dues by mailing a check to CoolMom or directing them to our website here
Once you have started your group contact CoolMom at firstname.lastname@example.org to let us know the contact information for the group, where the group is located, city/neighborhood, State and how often you are meeting up. Thank you!
How do I keep a Group Going?
Keeping a group going after 9 to 12 months has its challenges. Most volunteer groups have a life cycle of 12 to 24 months and in order to surpass this limited life span there are several things you can do.
To keep the group fresh and engaged try these tips on for size:
- invite new members attending their first group meeting to stay a few minutes after to get more information about the group's functioning
- make topics/actions relevant to your community and neighborhood
- plan action events as a group, assign one task to each member (or at least 5 members); connect the action to a tangible goal
- ask your members feedback on what they would like to see the group accomplish, e.g. at the beginning of the year collectively set some goals for your group and/or take a survey using an easy online tool like survey monkey to get member feedback
- rotate leadership so not one person is "carrying" the load of setting the agenda, sending out reminder emails, etc.
- divide Coordinator tasks between several members so the role is shared amongst two or three members
- advertise your group on local blogs and free e-newsletters
- announce and post your CoolMom group in other groups you and your members attend, such as, PTAs, parent groups, play groups
- plan social family gatherings at least twice a year, eg. potluck at someone's home or local park
- view an environmental movie several times a year and discuss as a group
- read a book, magazine or journal article and discuss as a group
- have fun!
For group ideas check out our 12 month topic calendar here
For those who have 'out grown' their initial CoolMom Group, but want to continue with CoolMom action, consider taking CoolMom Actions to your PTA, Green Team at your school or in your community, or other neighborhood group. Use these steps below for a guide.
Take CoolMom to school, work, play...
Moms and Dads are busy people. We recognize that and feel that it is important that the message of sustainable living and practicing ways to reduce our carbon footprint are most important. The vehicle, so to speak, in which this message is sent is secondary. So, if you want to spread the message and vision of CoolMom, but just can't make a group meeting, then try taking CoolMom to your children's school, your work, and play.
Here are some helpful ways to bring CoolMom to where ever you happen to be:
- Include some basic sustainable practices, such as, reducing waste at gatherings, using recycled paper for printing, and carpooling/biking/walking
- Incorporate at least 3 to 4 planned activities that has a component of sustainable living practices and carbon reducing properties
- some examples are creating a walking school bus, bike to 'work', 'school', 'grocery store' month [log miles and amount of carbon saved for the chosen month], or planting trees at a local park
- Introduce members to CoolMom through our website, share our 10 Things Families Can Do sheet and have them sign up on our home page
A Coordinator's role can be as simple as being a point person who connects the group members by email alerts and setting the topic for the meeting, or the role can be more involved, such as leading action events, contacting local speakers to share with the group on various topics about environmental stewardship and sustainable living practices.
Here is more detailed information on how to be a Coordinator/Leader for your group:
An Event Leader can be any member that is interested in leading an activity, event or taking the lead for planning the groups overall events. This can also be as simple as a member who chooses to host and organize a yearly potluck, clothes swap or holiday toy swap. To find out more details about how you can volunteer in this role and other roles go to Get Involved.