Established in 2007, Napa Moms, a local nonprofit run 100% by volunteer moms, has grown to serve more than 300 families in the Napa Valley through social support. The need to expand our reach from general social support to strategic support of maternal mental health of new mothers became apparent when we lost one of our own to suicide. There is increasing evidence that strategies to combat the impact of maternal mental illnesses that include regular peer support, mentorship and focus on self-care are effective against the crisis facing moms today.

Are we being dramatic?

  • Women in their childbearing years account for the largest group of Americans with depression.

  • Postpartum mood disorders are the most common complication of childbirth.

  • There are as many new cases of mothers suffering from maternal depression each year as women diagnosed with breast cancer.

  • The American Academy of Pediatrics has noted that maternal mental illness is the most under diagnosed obstetric complication in America.

Despite the prevalence, 1 in 7 women, maternal mental health concerns (anxiety, depression, insomnia, obsessions and compulsions, anger and post traumatic stress) continue to go unrecognized and untreated. Instead, families suffer in silence from the long term effects of a treatable condition.

  • Partners suffer from acute stress and depression

  • Babies are at increased risk of arriving early and with low birth weight

  • Children are unable to form healthy attachments

  • Learning and behavioral problems increase

  • Loved ones feel isolated as they don’t know what to do to help

Many people come to Napa to live and work in specific industries far from family and familiarity. It is our hope that providing a strong peer support and education program can help these families grow strong roots and bear fruit like the vines that have made Napa Valley one of the most sought after travel destinations in the world. 

This effort is led by Napa Moms and maternal mental health advocates,

Crystal McAuley, 2020Mom and PSI Coordinator

Jenny Shully, perinatal psychotherapist

Jennifer Hampton, perinatal psychotherapist

"Though the onus shouldn’t be on moms to fix the system, the reality is, moms are the only ones who can paint a full picture of what postpartum depression and maternal mental illness actually feels and looks like." -Patricia Tomasi of the Maternal Mental Health Research Collaborative

"In the United States, we pretend as if individual parents alone should be responsible for children. Parents are tasked with meeting all the practical and emotional needs of families. But we need a village to support today’s children. Policies intended to support families must take into account that mothers, often by themselves, are the ones struggling to keep their children fed, dry, clean and clothed." Psychology Today