Partner Spotlight: Perinatal Support Washington

One of GPS’s longest-running partnerships is with Perinatal Support Washington, a nonprofit organization that has run support groups using the GPS model for the past six years. In the organization’s most recent annual report for GPS groups offered during 2022 – 2023, participants reported experiencing high levels of engagement and satisfaction with the groups and felt strongly that they made an important difference in their life.

“Thank you, because in this place I felt supported, listened to and above all I was able to express my feelings,” wrote one parent in a post-group survey.

“We rarely talk about mental health in our community so it’s interesting to see and learn from you guys,” said another participant.

One parent said simply, “It gives me something to look forward to each week.”

In developing our Perinatal Support Groups, GPS drew upon a body of research including a study showing group-based parenting programs that used behavioral, cognitive-behavioral, or multimodal approaches were associated with short-term improvements in depression, anxiety, stress, anger, guilt, confidence, and partner relationship satisfaction.

Another study on which we have relied showed that a series of four interpersonal group therapy sessions was successful in preventing post-partum depression in low-income women at risk for the condition.

Some of these results were reflected by Perinatal Support Groups participants in Perinatal Support Washington’s annual report. Fifty-five percent of participants reported that their feelings of anxiety and depression had improved, while fifty-eight percent reported they felt less stressed about responding to their baby’s needs. Fifty-three percent of group members said their satisfaction as a parent/caregiver had improved.

“I love the connection to my baby, we are one. This group has shown me that parenting isn’t easy, but there’s ways to help you get through it when it seems rough and there’s people to talk to,” said one parent.

Another described the group as “a godsend,” adding, “I’m a first time mom of color and not only does the group get me and baby out of the house, it gives me a chance to connect with other parents of color, and my baby a chance to socialize as well!”

Learn more about Perinatal Support Washington here. Learn more about our customized curriculums for perinatal parents and other groups here.