MOPS is a community for mums – a meeting place where mums of young children can be themselves, share learning and friendship with other mothers at the same stage, and gain confidence in mothering. MOPS groups are hosted by Christian churches and are open to all mums of young children (from 0-6 years). MOPS groups vary in size from a small gathering of 8 or 10 women to over 50. There may be some variations but classic MOPS groups usually meet for two hours fortnightly during school terms. Mums enjoy ‘time out’ while their children are cared for in MOPS Kids, a program with age-appropriate activities including playdough, car mats, singing, outdoor play, bible stories and craft. The MOPS leadership team is made up of women who are themselves mothers of preschoolers and have the support of a more experienced mum who acts as a mentor.
MUMSnext is for mothers of school age children. It provides ongoing connection for graduating MOPS mums and seeks to address the issues unique to the next stage of parenting. As mothers enter the school years, new challenges and issues arise, but the need for community and hope remains. MUMSnext is an open, accepting place where all mothers of school-age kids can experience authentic community. MUMSnext meetings are usually held fortnightly in school terms and can be held in the day or evening.
Teen MOPS provides a faith based, non-judgmental environment where teen mums can come together for support and encouragement. In Teen MOPS, the teaching, activities and friendships are all focused on the very distinct circumstances of teenage mums. Teen MOPS helps teen mums become more self-sufficient, confident, mature, giving and self-aware young women. Teen MOPS groups can meet in public schools or community centres, as well as in churches, and meet fortnightly for teaching and other activities. All meetings encourage young mothers to voice their frustrations, fears and joys while their children are well taken care of in the MOPS Kids program. The leaders of a Teen MOPS group are usually women who are not mothers of preschoolers.