Starting a Motherless Daughters Group: Step 1—Getting Started– Defining Your Purpose

By: Mary Ellen Collins

Interested in gathering a group of motherless daughters together? Would you like the support of others who have walked in your shoes?

I started the Motherless Daughters Ministry in the year 2000. It has become a 501(c)(3) and is an internationally known support for women who have lost or missed the nurturing care of a mother. We minister to over 9000 women from 10 different countries. I did not start there. Like most things, it started small and grew. Baby steps. One step at a time.

I have been nudged to share with you some of the things I learned over the past 19 years. I have learned that nudging is God’s way of asking me to do something. I am being obedient. That is one thing I learned when I began this ministry. Listen to your nudges. Ponder what they mean, and then act on them. I am writing to encourage you. If you feel the nudge to start a group, act on it.

In a series of blog articles, I will share with you what has worked for me. I will cover topics such as—Where do you find like-minded souls? What is the purpose of your group? Where do you meet? What’s important in picking a place to meet? What’s your first meeting going to be like? What do you do to make the meeting go smoothly? How do I manage the time together so it works for everyone? How do I get group members to come back? How often do we meet?

Let me know what you want me to talk about and I will include your ideas. Believe me, I have learned a lot over the past 19 years. Some ideas were successes. Some were near successes. I don’t use the word failure. Everything I do, I learn something. Even if it is just to avoid doing it that way again.

Define Your Purpose. The first thing you need to do is to figure out the purpose for starting the group. Is it for you? Nothing wrong with that. That was my reason. I just knew there were other women who had to have had similar experiences. I was right.

Or, do you want to help others? Consider this thoroughly. If you are thinking you want to help others, well, they may not be ready to be helped. Remember you have to work on yourself first. My advice—start with yourself. When you are invested in what you are doing your passion will grow and will be contagious.

So, this is your first step. Stop. Ponder who it’s for. Don’t go any further until you have a pretty good idea of your purpose.

Next time, I will talk about Telling Your Story. Be thinking of what you would say to a stranger to let her know how you two have something in common. Want to read some of my story first? Click here to get a head start.

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