On Saturday, May 7, the nonprofit A Community Empowered Family and Children Outreach (ACE) will host its first community event. Entitled the “Monumental Moms Brunch,” this event will be held at The Hyatt Place at 11:30 a.m. ACE has partnered with fellow nonprofit The Klubhouse—a local organization dedicated to helping youth process the loss of a loved one—to bring this event to Murfreesboro.
While the event is held to recognize mothers and matronly figures in the area, its guest list will include students and personnel from Rutherford County Schools. RCS School Board Chair Tiffany Johnson will serve as event guest speaker. Students attending the event will be present to recognize the mothers and guardians who have been nominated for event awards the day before Mother’s Day.
ACE Executive Director Jasmine Bethea tells Murfreesboro Voice that the event is held in appreciation of the county’s many local moms. “Initially I wanted to highlight hard-working mothers in the community and do some kind of expo for women,” Jasmine recalls.
After chatting with another teacher about the lack of positive dialog between students, teachers, and parents, Jasmine decided to alter the brunch’s focus. She says, “During the conversation, I instantly thought of how beautiful it would be for the students at my school to be able to nominate their female caretakers for an award and present it to them in a formal setting free of charge. This would show so much appreciation to women who not only take care of their biological children but have taken on that role for other children as well.”
A mother herself, Jasmine is a local English teacher who has seen firsthand the troubles kids face when they don’t have a strong parental figure in their lives.
“Throughout my years as an educator I’ve come in contact with many underserved youths that are less likely to transition successfully into adulthood,” she says. “After years of contemplation I decided to take a chance and create change by providing these students, their families, and other underserved individuals in our community with positive experiences, support, and resources to help them eventually overcome and evolve beyond their adversity.”
Jasmine’s experience with underserved youth served as the driving force for the creation of ACE, which provides mentorship, career pathways, and support for local individuals in need.
“The organization was created for the community with the objective of enriching their lives with academic, mental and social support, positive experiences, life building opportunities, and genuine love. It is our intention to provide a holistic approach to helping solve the lack of focus on the root causes of being an underserved youth and the impacts caused by living life without adequate opportunity, exposure, and resources,” Jasmine says.
Jasmine notes that there’s currently a lack of support for those stakeholders involved in a child’s development. This is precisely why she feels that the brunch event is vital since it offers an additional day of recognition.
Jasmine says, “Often mothers suffer in silence and are in survival mode trying to ensure that their children are safe, fed, and happy. Although being a mother is a lifetime commitment/job, I feel it is important to acknowledge the hard work and daily efforts of mothers and female caretakers. I think allowing the children to express their appreciation makes it even more special.”
Knowing that mothers are all too humble, Jasmine retooled the event to focus on both students and mother figures. “I wanted them to express their appreciation and celebrate the women who mean the most to them,” she says. Jasmine adds that Tiffany Johnson was invited to the event because she was the perfect guest speaker for such a cause.
“She’s a working mother who has had to privately and publicly overcome adversity while keeping a smile and being devoted to the needs of her children,” Jasmine states. “I think having her share her experiences and be transparent will encourage mothers who are struggling and empower all mothers to celebrate their successes.”
Jasmine says that ACE’s collaborations with The Klubhouse are just getting started, as the two nonprofits are planning a July back-to-school block party. Both organizations are currently seeking donations, as well as a DJ and food truck vendors.
All white and pink attire is recommended for the event. For further information about the Monumental Moms Brunch, Voice readers are referred to Jasmine’s email address: jbethea(at)acefamilyoutreach.org