A New Parent’s Guide to Grand Rapids


Are you a New Parent in Grand Rapids?

You’re gonna want some backup, and we have it!

Parenting resources abound in West Michigan, but who has time to search for them with a newborn in their arms? We’ve compiled this handy list so you just need to bookmark this one page and have all the answers at your fingertips!

These recommendations come from our Facebook readers – locals who have been in your shoes.

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 Where New Parents Can Find Help Around Grand Rapids

Educational/Support Resources for Kids

  • Bright Beginnings | Personal Home Visits, Playgroups/Parent Meetings, Developmental Screenings, and Resource Network.
  • MomsBloom | Provides practical help and emotional support during times of transition for growing families.
  • Pine Rest’s Mother and Baby Program | Short-term, intensive day program for women experiencing significant symptoms of postpartum depression and other perinatal mood disorders.
  • Early Head Start | For pregnant women and children under age 3; Home Visiting, Health, Special Needs and Social Services.
  • Safe Kids Greater Grand Rapids | Childhood injury prevention program, including car-seat checkups, safety workshops and sports clinics.
  • Family Futures | Building strong families through parent support, education and prevention-based programming.
  • Welcome Home Baby | Available to first time parents, at-home visit from nurse to answer questions and help you get resources/support.
  • mealtrain.com or takethemameal.com | Free online services for friends/family/neighbors to sign up to take new family a meal.

Local Breastfeeding Resources

  • Baby Beloved | Offers lactation consultation (home and office visits), breastfeeding and pumping classes and workshops.
  • Spectrum Health Breastfeeding Support Group | Support group, classes, personal support during your hospital stay and after.
  • La Leche League | Offers mom-to-mom breastfeeding and mothering information and support.
  • Kent County Health Department | Lactation Support Team comprising of International Board Certified Lactation Consultants, Certified Lactation Specialists, Lactation Educators, Breastfeeding Peer Counselors, Registered Dietitians and Registered Nurses ready to assist mothers with their breastfeeding needs.

For Parents Looking to Connect with Other GR Parents

  • Local church Bible studies.
  • Local MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers) groups.
  • Moms of Grand Rapids | Offers: Monthly Meetings, Play Groups, Mom’s Night Out, Game Nights, Kid Events, Movie Nights, Book Club and more.
  • MOMSClub of Kentwood, Caledonia & Cascade | A support group for full and part-time stay-at-home moms offering a variety of weekly activities for moms and children and a forum for topics pertinent to child rearing, homemaking, personal improvement, and the family.

Things to Do with Your Baby Around Town

Resource Lists We’ve Previously Compiled

And because motherhood can sometimes feel lonely, check out Melody’s posts on the struggle:

This list is by no means exhaustive of all the resources available, but it’s an excellent start for those of you who are new to this parenting gig. Plus, they are all resources that come recommended by people like you – fans of Grand Rapids Kids!

Do you have another resource that should be added to the list? Share it in the comments, and help this page become an even better resource for new parents out there.

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