Thursday, February 27, 2014

March Membership Madness!

Look at that sexy alliteration up there!

BWI mothership has thrown down a challenge and so once again, it's membership drive time.  I won't do the guilt trip this time.  I suspect that last June was good enough, right?

In all seriousness, it's good for us to have membership drives a couple of times a year.  The baby years are such a fleeting time in our lives and thus the lifespan of a dues-paying member is generally only a year.  However, our needs are constant and we must find new members to help us continue to build our library, create educational materials, and keep BWI of Atlanta a worthwhile organization to join.

The truth is that we are growing rapidly, and it is no longer feasible for us to bring one library, or even multiple libraries, to multiple locations.  Our goal, then, for this membership drive is to separate our current library into three libraries, each as well-stocked as the other.  This means the library tab on the webpage will have a tab for each area instead of one large tab with a giant, confusing wall of text.  It makes the checkout process easier for all of us and will help us better track usage statistics for each area.

Our drive isn't going to get us everything we need, but it will be a very good start if we can hit our goals.  Here's the breakdown:

5 memberships: 2 wrap conversion ring slings
10 memberships: 1 wrap conversion mei tai by Chrysalis Designs
15 memberships: 1 Didymos ruby hemp indio, size 5
20 memberships: 100 (or more!) BWI of Atlanta car magnets, one for every member who joins or renews during the drive, and all members in good standing
25 memberships: 1 standard Tula
30 memberships: 1 standard Kinderpack
35 memberships: 2 size 4 Natibaby hemp blend wraps
40 memberships: 1 standard Tula
45 memberships: 1 standard Kinderpack
50 memberships: 1 Hop-Tye
50+ memberships: ?????

Current members who would like to renew their memberships may renew during the drive and extend their current membership to a year past their original renewal date.  So, for example, if Sally Slinger joined in July of 2013 and she renews during this drive, that would extend her expiration date from July of 2014 to July of 2015.

50 members feels like a lot, but our last drive was a huge success!  We smashed our goals and then some.  I think we can do this!  We can do this!  Tell everyone you know to join!  BWI members get many, many perks throughout the year, from a running discount at New Baby Products to special members-only workshops and giveaways.  Becoming a member of BWI is worth your $30.00.  Trust me.

And you know, I'm not just the president... I'm a member too!

Monday, December 2, 2013

Gratitude and perspective

As the calendar year draws to a close, and we celebrate holidays with friends and family, I've found myself more and more motivated to write a blogpost about giving thanks.  A lot has happened since we became BWI of Atlanta last October, and much of it could not have happened without the support of the babywearing community, friends, and family.

First and foremost I'd like to thank all the people who keep Babywearing International of Atlanta funded - the members.  Without our members we can't have a lending library.  That is the biggest draw for anyone joining this organization.  Our lending library has mushroomed and it's all because of people joining and paying dues.  All of the educators at BWI of Atlanta are volunteers, which means that 100% of the chapter's share of dues go straight towards the lending library or advertising.

Of course, we can't have a lending library without the vendors and manufacturers that donate carriers to us or sell us carriers at a discount.  If you've been a longtime reader of this blog you will not be surprised to hear that Jennifer Harris of Marsupial Mamas has been instrumental in helping us build our lending library.  The vast majority of our wraps have come from Marsupial Mamas and I could not ask for a more wonderful, generous person with whom to do business.  When we are in need, I turn to Jen first.  She comes through every time.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

IBW sponsor shout-out

Pavo Textiles has made International Babywearing Week an extra special one for us this year.  Much love goes out to Jen and Erin for working tirelessly to support the babywearing community and provide an American-made, beautifully designed, high-quality product.

Image credit Malia Drake


Image credit Malia Drake

Pavo S.T.I.C.K. bags also make it easy to remember the cardinal safety rules for babywearing:

  • Supported back
  • Tight
  • In view at all times
  • Close enough to kiss
  • Keep chin off chest
Happy International Babywearing Week, with thanks to Pavo Textiles!

Thursday, October 3, 2013

IBW Membership Drive

Membership drive details!

The drive runs from Sunday, 9/29 through Saturday, 10/12.  Any new or renewing members that join during the drive will get double the number of bids for the members-only giveaway.  Existing members will get 15, but new and renewing members will get 30!

To be very clear for others, purchasing a membership is the only way to gain bids for giveaway prizes.  Bids are a part of the membership package.  If you would like to donate to BWI of Atlanta, you are of course welcome to (donations may be written off) and anyone who donates will receive a voucher good for a members-only event.

What are you waiting for?  Join us!  Resistance is futile.

http://www.bwiofatlanta.org/join.html

Sunday, September 22, 2013

International Babywearing Week 2013

International Babywearing Week 2013 is around the corner!  This year, IBW runs from October 7th to October 13th.  Just like last year, BWI of Atlanta has a ton of events planned all around the metro area (head over to http://www.bwiofatlanta.org for a full schedule).

A lot has happened since our last update.  One important thing is... we finally have a website!  Our membership drive gave us enough funds to purchase our domain and hosting space and finally build our home on the web.  http://www.bwiofatlanta.org is our little homestead on the Interwebs.  Please check it out!  It has a lot of information.  This is an understatement.

We've also welcomed two new VBEs to the fold.  Priscila and Malia joined us in August and we're thrilled to have them!

As for our #IBW2013 celebration (Tweeps, Instagrammers and other hashtag addicts, this is the official hashtag), here's a little preview of what we've got going on:

  • BWI meetings at Wilson Family Chiropractic and Baby Love
  • Micro photoshoots at The Solarium and Marietta Square
  • Playdate and picnic at Piedmont Park (try saying that 5 times fast)
  • A Dance Your Baby session
  • Marietta Square shop crawl (I cannot believe this event is going to happen)
  • A ton of giveaways for our BWI members and Facebook group members, including a gift certificate to New Baby Products
  • Membership drive!
  • Photospam day on Facebook
  • Pumpkin patch trip
  • Picnic at the Gwinnett Historic Courthouse
There are going to be lots of prizes given away so be sure to join the Facebook group to see what they are.  In addition, members will get access to members-only giveaways.  It's our way of saying thank you for the contributions and support.  Stay tuned for details of the membership drive!

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Looking For a Few Good Moms (or Dads!)

BWI of Atlanta is growing, and we need your help!  Want to become more involved in Babywearing International of Atlanta? Become a Volunteer Member or Volunteer Babywearing Educator!

As a non-VBE Volunteer Member, you can assist by coordinating events, set-up, hospitality and greeting members, and helping with library checkouts.  All volunteers must be active, dues-paying members of BWI of Atlanta. 
To volunteer, please contact us at bwiofatlanta@gmail.com

VBEs lead our babywearing meetings, teach at meetings, workshops and outreach events, and assist with administrative duties.  VBEs have passed a written and practical examination administered by a BWI Master Babywearing Educator, and have been accredited by Babywearing International.

To become a BWI of Atlanta VBE you must:
  •         Have been a BWI member for a minimum of 6 months.
  •          Have experience wearing both babies and toddlers in a variety of carriers. 
  •         Have experience teaching babywearing.
  •         Volunteers interested in becoming VBEs help at meetings with new membership forms and fees, greeting, etc.
  •         VBE Trainees will have the opportunity to shadow a VBE at meetings.
  •         We can assist with additional training sessions for VBE hopefuls as needed.


Some of the benefits of accreditation through Babywearing International are a solid and well-rounded background on the 4 basic styles of babywearing (1 shouldered carriers, wraps, Asian baby carriers and soft structured carriers), more emphasis on practical application than other programs and the ability to receive your accreditation while you study the portions of babywearing that you are passionate about.

Our accredited educators receive continuing education on a monthly basis, support from Babywearing International in regards to group growth and library additions and liability insurance to protect you while you teach.


If you are interested in beginning the process of becoming a VBE, please contact us at bwiofatlanta@gmail.com or speak with one of our VBE Officers (Kate, Aisling, or Michelle).


Friday, July 26, 2013

August meeting schedule and summer round-up

I know you've all been waiting on tenterhooks to hear the results of our June membership drive.  I have to apologize for not updating this blog in some time, but as it turned out I had a baby in mid-June (who knew?) and have been on a steady diet of coffee, optimism and hope since then.

Let's get the really important stuff out of the way first.  August is almost here!  July has flown by.  BWI of Atlanta is having its usual three meetings in August, and hopefully soon will be adding a fourth in Gwinnett County.

Our regular Saturday meeting will be August 10th from 10 - 12 at The Solarium in Decatur.  Why not August 3rd?  Because on August 3rd BWI of Atlanta is making a special appearance at The Big Latch-On!  Babywearing and breastfeeding go together quite well so we'll be representing ourselves at that event.

Our regular Friday meeting will be August 9th from 11 - 1 at Harry's Whole Foods in Marietta.

Our regular Monday meeting will be August 12th August 19th from 10 - 12 at New Baby Products in Atlanta.

Onto the results!  Our members came through and the drive was a huge, and I mean HUGE success.  We gained over 50 new members and more members are still joining.  We've been putting that money to good use.  We were able to get the following:

- BWI of Atlanta membership cards for all members
- BWI of Atlanta static cling decals for all members joining or renewing during the drive
- 2 keep calm and wear your baby t-shirts
- A $25 gift voucher to Comfy Joery
- A $50 gift voucher to wovenwraps.com
- Sleeping Baby Productions ring sling
- Kalea Baby ring sling
- Standard/standard Kinderpack with kool knit
- Chimparoo mei tai
- Babyhawk Oh Mei! half-buckle mei tai
- Didymos Jack size 6
- Lenny Lamb bamboo rainbow size 6
- Didymos bleu nino size 4
- Natibaby hemp blue/green clovers size 6
- Infantino wrap and tie
- Vatanai Koira 4.5m
- Vatanai Orkney 4.5m
- Vatanai Glaciar 3m
- Wrapsody Bali Stretch Alyssa
- Pikkolo

I am blown away by how many members joined us and how we have been able to expand the library.  Checkouts are at an all-time high and people are spreading the word about Babywearing International of Atlanta.  All thanks to our members!

There are more things to talk about, like the wrap workshop and the upcoming carrier-specific members-only workshops, but I think this blog post is long enough and I will leave the rest for later.  See you at the meeting!