A Santa Clarita mom who wanted to stay involved in her community is bringing back a nonprofit to support mothers with sons and daughters serving in the armed forces.
Blue Star Mothers of America is a network of support for mothers who are coping with the anxiety, concerns and frustration that can come with having a loved one away from the family, often in dangerous situations.
For Sabina Fetter, who first sought out the re-chartering of a local group, the impetus was two-fold: She’d recently wrapped up more than seven years of involvement with the West Ranch High football team’s parent-support group, and after her oldest enlisted, she realized she would not only miss being involved in the parent community, but also that parents in a position like hers, with children serving, face unique challenges that are helped by the support from others going through similar struggles.
“Basically, the main thing we are is support for each other,” she said, “Secondary to that is doing stuff for veterans and those deployed and those who are on bases. There are kids who go to basic training who have absolutely no contact with their family… and God forbid someone loses their child in combat — we’re that support system for them.”
In fact, just in a few short months of researching and reaching out, she’s made lifelong friends, she said, and hopes to share that sense of community.
“I needed to do something, and it’s great being a part of all these Facebook ‘Army mom’ groups,” she said, “but these people don’t live here. And to be painfully honest, the only person who understands what a military mom or family members go through, is another military mom or family.”
After digging around on social media, online and talking to other Blue Star groups, she realized the local need for such a group, and the powerful impact it could have. The nearest branches were in Moorpark, Antelope Valley and Bakersfield, but those were all a bit far considering how personal the help can get.
“There’s a level of anxiety that we go through,” she said, “that we can’t show our children.”
One of the first thing she set out to do was to garner five initial members, which is the number needed for a charter, but that happened almost instantaneously, she said, knowing there were lots of moms like her out there seeking the same sense of camaraderie. The group now has as many as 30 already planning to attend the first meeting, and more than a dozen registered members.
The group is hosting its first official, agendized meeting this coming Tuesday, working a partnership with the VFW Post No. 6885 at 16208 Sierra Highway, near Baker Canyon Road. The meetings are being scheduled for every third Tuesday of the month, commencing next week, which will coincide with Taco Tuesdays at the VFW, Fetter said. Men are allowed to be at the meetings, but the organization’s rules prevent them from holding offices in Blue Star Mothers.
One of the items on the agenda is creating a fundraising opportunity for the city’s military banners program, which she thinks should be provided for the men and women serving at no cost.
Membership for the Santa Clarita chapter is open to all mothers (birth, step, adoptive, foster, grand or legal guardian) of a service member that is either currently serving or has been discharged from the armed forces of the United States.
Anyone seeking more information For more information please contact: Sabina Fetter, President, Blue Star Mothers of Santa Clarita, 661-212-8158
According to the Blue Star Mothers of America website:
Since 1942, Blue Star Mothers of America has not only provided support for active duty service personnel, they promote patriotism, assist veteran organizations and are available to assist in homeland volunteer efforts to help our country remain strong. The Blue Star Mothers of America, Inc. is a non-partisan, non-political, non-sectarian organization. We do not support any political candidate nor do we endorse any religious organization. We are here to share our devotion to…our pride in…and support the efforts and sacrifices of our active duty military, guard or reserves as well as our veterans through activities and community projects.