With an ambition to create “pockets of little villages” supporting mums throughout the state, Anita Martin’s new business, Shine Mumma Shine, has a clear goal. Currently in its pre-launch phase, Anita says the idea for her business came about through her own post-partum journey.
Anita, who also runs The Modern Event Planner, chats with Lauren Zwaans from KIS Communications about the programs on offer, why every mum needs a village, and what we can expect at the SA Woman Awards.
// Lauren: Congratulations on your new business, Shine Mumma Shine! Why did you decide to create this business?
Anita: Thank you! Technically we are still in pre-launch, but we’re aiming to be live and going in the next few weeks!
Shine Mumma Shine has been in the pipe line for a little over a year now. It originally started as a small Facebook page, just for my own personal musings, focusing on motherhood. From there, a little idea to give new mums further support – and also trying to create more conversations about motherhood, the reality of becoming a mum and basically all those other things no one tells you about – was bubbling away.
It wasn’t until I was pregnant with number two that it started evolving into a new business idea, realising that caring for mothers post-partum and in their journey of motherhood is a huge passion of mine.
There is such a huge gap in what I like to call mother care, so I really wanted to be able to make a difference.
// What services do you offer women in SA?
Initially I will be offering post-partum support which will revolve around three base programs – 4 weeks, 6 months and 12 months.
The first year of motherhood is a trying time, so I am really excited to be able to support these new families during this time. Each program will allow me to work specifically with mothers to allow them to feel more confident in their new role.
This could simply be providing a shoulder to cry on, giving them a chance to finally have 10 minutes to have a shower alone, or running simple errands. The program is designed to make their lives just a little easier. At the soul of it, it’s really about being their person.
In addition to the packages, I will also curate a specifically designed “menu” so new families can select additional services. It could be food deliveries, lactation consultants, counsellors, or simply a cleaner to ease the pressure of housekeeping!
I also couldn’t not include an event component – so I’ll be offering specific pre-baby bonding events which will connect mothers before their babies arrive, and eventually Village building events as well.
// Who is Shine Mumma Shine suited to?
It is pretty much suited to all mothers – whether or not you have a newborn, you’re a pregnant mumma, or a mother with adult kids. It is all relatable and we are all in it together!
Every single mother carries a wealth of knowledge, and I am hoping Shine Mumma Shine helps create those conversations that usually would have been passed down generation by generation.
// Your messages on social media are so uplifting and honest! Is lifting other mothers up at the heart of Shine Mumma Shine?
Absolutely!! Motherhood can be so completely lonely sometimes and I want others to just be able to find that small bit of light, even when they are just buried beneath all the stuff that comes with motherhood.
Shine Mumma Shine is about lifting the mental motherload and creating space for mums to just find themselves again. At the core, it really is about empowering new mothers to shine!
// We know you run another business, The Modern Event Planner. Where do you see Shine Mumma Shine going from here and how are you going managing two businesses?
Yes!! First time around with TMEP I was so excited to just get something out there and really rushed the process, so I wanted to take my time with this project. I wanted to enjoy the lead up to the launch and really try and make sure I got the branding and service right.
Also having just had my second baby in March this year, I just wanted to slow down the process and wait for this business to tell me when she was ready to arrive – a bit like giving birth for the third time I guess – less painful, however!
Hopefully after I launch I can connect with some really amazing mums who value the service that I provide and fingers crossed it goes from there.
I have always had a passion for creating opportunities for other mums, so I really hope that I can bring in others who share that same passion for the motherhood space to come in and also be able to help others.
Shine Mumma Shine is really a service for mums by mums. We get it…we get all of it!!
I plan to juggle both businesses. I see The Modern Event Planner also evolving more into the event coaching space and really niching down into smaller events. Event Management with a young family is really testing at times, so I really want to focus on those events that bring me joy (rather than stress). 2020 is going to be a big year of change – so I guess watch this space! ?
// Does Shine Mumma Shine come from a personal place?
Absolutely it does – and a vulnerable place at that. I have two babies of my own, Arlo, who is nearly four, and Aila who is seven months old.
It wasn’t until about a year after Arlo that I came across the term matrescence and it changed my whole view of motherhood – it really made me understand why I was feeling the way that I did – and I really couldn’t understand why no one was talking about it. I just felt a strong pull to really start doing more research on motherhood and the transition to motherhood, which is where the idea of SMS popped up.
I was also lucky enough to have the support for four weeks after I gave birth to my two babies. My mum came to stay with us for three weeks both times and I felt this really made a difference to my post-partum period, as it turns out I was doing what they call the “Golden Month” without even realising it, and I want to be able to gift this amazing time of your life to other new mothers.
“Shine Mumma Shine is about lifting the mental motherload and creating space for mums to just find themselves again.
At the core, it really is about empowering new mothers to shine!”
// Do you think mothers can have ‘it all’ and, in your experience, what does having ‘it all’ look like?
I think you can probably have it all, but in saying that I also think the idea of having it all is different for everyone.
For me that term relates to having a happy, loving family, who are living comfortably and are able to do what they are passionate about.
There are times where I have needed extra support to be able to achieve my version of having it all, but that is okay. You can ask for help, because you can’t do it all, all the time!
// Why is having or creating a village so important for mums?
Because a traditional nuclear family is not actually designed to support motherhood.
We have been conditioned into thinking that we have to do all the things as a mum, when history tells us this is not the case.
It takes a village to raise a child as they say, of course it does – because it’s bloody hard work!
It is actually only in recent times, as we separated ourselves from village life, that the mental motherload has increased to the point it is now.
The village is how we learn mothering skills; it’s where responsibilities are shared and problems are halved. I think if we embraced letting people in to help, and letting go of all the new stereotypes of the perfect mother, we could actually thrive in motherhood, rather than just try to survive each and every day.
// Where do you see Shine Mumma Shine in a year’s time?
Expanding the team to help as many mums around SA as possible! That’s the goal – to create little pockets of villages around SA.
// You’re a very active member of the SA Woman community. What do you love about this community?
I love that there is never a shortage of women to call on for help!
I have created so many wonderful friendships through SA Woman, discovered so many awesome businesses and it is also like having cheerleaders in your corner when you need them!
// You’ll be more hands-on with SA Woman next year. Can you tell us about that?
Yes! I am so excited to be jumping in to help Carly whilst she is off taking some time to spend with her family.
With my events background I will be initiating a lot more member events and will be releasing an events calendar in the near future.
I’ll also be supporting the members in the group with any questions about SA Woman, and assisting in moderating the group with Kathy. I am looking forward to discovering some more amazing women-led businesses and putting my own little unique stamp on SA Woman.
// Finally, you’ve been an integral part of planning the Awards night! What can we expect on the night?
You can expect a lot of fun – come ready with a sense of festivity! It’s a night to really let your hair down and celebrate the year that was. Both Carly and I have been overwhelmed with the response to the awards night, so we really needed to ramp it up this year. It is going to be an amazing celebration of our wonderful community.