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Tuesday November 30th, 2010

Posted at 9:24am

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Rows of glass ornaments were available at the O'Connor booth. (Photo By: Jeannette Catherine)

If finding gifts this year has been hard, nothing helps more than a mother’s touch.

As children sang and Forrest Glade arena bustled with parents looking for great gifts, Mom2Mom (M2M) hosted its 2nd Annual Holiday Gift & Craft Show on Saturday. The organization and its website used the event to bring people together and help another good cause.

“We suggested a $1 donation or canned good,” said 40-year-old M2M owner and event organizer, Lisa Payne, about the entry fee. “It will be collected by the Salvation Army and benefit those in need locally.”

Being a family-friendly event, entertainment for children included Storytime with Santa, a colouring contest and performance by the junior troupe from Riverfront Theatre Company. For adults, over 40 vendors provided a wide selection of unique gifts, ranging from handmade crafts and clothing to holiday decorations and baked goods.

Founded by William and Elaine Jun in 2003, M2M’s goal is to provide an outlet for local parents to connect and find community resources. Other annual events include spring and fall yard sales to sell used clothing and toys, making them affordable for parents on a budget. Another spring event, M2M’s family expo showcases local resources.

“Several community organizations are on hand to let parents know how they can assist them with different needs,” said Payne. “We also have local family friendly businesses at the event to showcase their products and services, helping many small businesses get connected with new clientele and parents with finding new products and services …It also provides business opportunities for stay at home moms.”

While the site grows with over 400 active forum members and 5,000 newsletter subscribers, interaction remains its top priority.

“The most important part of [M2M] is the support and advice that parents can get from other members,” said Payne. “Sometimes being a parent can be overwhelming and it’s nice to know that there are others who have had the same experiences and can help you through tough times.”

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