In Remembrance: Maureen Soper

When founding Children First parent Maureen Soper died in April 2017, her family designated Children First as a recipient of donations in her honor.

With a portion of those funds, we are creating a seating space on our playground where parents will connect as they watch their children play after school.  We imagine offering this space as both a simple pleasure, and as a means to profoundly impact the well-being of families and children.  We envision parents gathering to enjoy each other’s company; to delight in observing their children at play; and to offer each other support around the considerable challenges of parenting young children – the kind of support Maureen offered so generously to me and many others.  We hope this gathering place will nurture parents’ trust and affection for one another, as well as their sense of mutual responsibility and care for all the Children Firsters.  This simple but powerful part of being in a parenting community – pausing to sit together and observe children in play – was something Maureen saw as a key component of what Children First calls “the caring conspiracy.”  She believed, as we do, that it takes a village to raise a child, and that our village is more likely to thrive when it meets up, day after day, in a space that is comfortable, beautiful and close to but not intruding on the children’s space for play.

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Here’s a sketch of what we have in mind… the benches are being built now, and we expect to have everything installed, landscaped and dedicated sometime this fall.

To help donors understand Maureen’s relationship with Children First more completely, I sent them a thank you that included an excerpt from my remarks at Maureen’s memorial.  More here…  Donna remembers Maureen Soper