August marks the start of Breastfeeding Awareness Month, and there are several working mothers who statistically stop breastfeeding earlier than recommended by the CDC. One of the reasons suggests mothers may not be getting the support they need from employers. Indeed- in 2018, just under half of employers provided a separate onsite lactation room or mother’s room. For women concerned with how they’ll balance returning to the workplace and being a new mom, below is a list of coworking spaces, free resources, and products striving to make life easier.
The Riveter: Founded in 2016 by former corporate litigator Amy Nelson, The Riveter is a national membership network offering content, community and coworking spaces, all designed with a focus on women in work. Coworking spaces exist in Texas, Colorado, California, Minnesota, Oregon, and Washington, and member benefits include 24-hour access, mothers’ rooms, and mail service.
Smyrna Infant Village: All too often coworking spaces don’t include a critical element of support for working moms- or “mompreneurs”- on-site childcare. SeVeda Kent’s coworking space in Georgia has just that, as well as career development, business networking and community, and private coworking areas.
The Cube: Founded by two Maryland Moms, Dr. Tammira Lucas & TeKesha Jamison, The Cube is Maryland’s first coworking space with on-site childcare. The Cube provides business and lifestyle resources as well, including monthly manicures.
Women’s Work Initiative: A national initiative from The Mom Project, the Women’s Work Initiative is designed to connect women with leading employers to promote business, social, and economic growth by maximizing female workforce participation. 2019 employers participating in the initiative include Uber, TransUnion, and Facebook. Their mission includes providing women with an opportunity to re-skill and re-enter the workforce and placing them into roles with companies that understand and support working moms.
FlexJobs: Earlier this summer, the resource released a comprehensive downloadable guide to help stay-at-home moms looking to re-enter the workforce. The guide is designed to help them understand the challenges and realities of returning to work, learn from the experiences of other moms, tackle resumes, cover letters, interviewing, and networking and figure out how to address work gaps and gain experience.
Ovia Health: Ovia Health believes the workplace is not supporting women the way it should be, and women have to make impossible choices between health, family, and career. To solve this problem, Ovia Health provides personalized clinical and evidence-based programming and coaching for reproductive health, fertility, pregnancy, postpartum and parental wellness, from a team of registered nurses, midwives, lactation counselors, and health coaches. In just seven years, Ovia Health has helped over 12 million women and families on their parenthood journey, and their maternity and family benefits solution has seen triple-digit growth over the past few years.
Willow: Willow was founded in 2014 by Naomi Kelman and her signature product, the Willow Wearable Breast Pump, is the world’s first all-in-one, in-bra breast pump. Kelman not only provides solutions for mom consumers but companies as well. Willow at Work is an employee perk program where companies can cover all or part of the cost of the Willow Pump for their employees.
Mamava: Mamava offers freestanding lactation pods for workplaces help employers support their breastfeeding employees and comply with workplace lactation laws. According to cofounders Christine Dodson and Sascha Mayer, the company is expected to grow 50% this year and three out of every four staff members is a mom. Mamava has also teamed up with Medela to offer New Moms’ Healthy Returns, a customizable, single-source solution with best-in-class technology, resource, and accessories specifically designed for new and expecting parents.
Lactation Lab: Lactation Lab believes empowered moms have healthier babies. Founded in 2017 by UCLA physician Stephanie Canale, the company was started from her own need of wanting to know what was in Canale’s own milk after her daughter was diagnosed as failure to thrive while exclusively breastfed. Lactation Lab analyzes breast milk- a mother collects milk, sends it to their lab, and then receives a personalized report with nutritional advice to optimize her child’s nutrition and replenish her own. Today companies like Hulu offer Lactation Lab test kits for female employees returning to work after having a baby.
Milk Stork: Milk Stork is the first-ever breast milk shipping company, founded in 2015 by Kate Torgersen. More than 500 companies, including Hilton, Pinterest, SAP, and Unilever, offer Milk Stork as an employee benefit for their traveling, breastfeeding moms. The company offers three distinct services, which include domestic and international shipping.