Helping hand for Ipswich mums facing 'crippling' loneliness

Kim Trotter, founder of Future Female Society Picture: GEMMA MITCHELL

Kim Trotter founded the Future Female Society - Credit: Archant

When she was a young, single parent, Kim Trotter felt the joys of motherhood were tempered by "crippling" feelings of loneliness.

So now, the inspirational community leader is to bring workshops for younger mums to the Gainsborough area of Ipswich - to empower them with the confidence to change their lives for the better.

Kim Trotter said Instagram and Facebook can put pressure on mums and dads to show the happy side of parenting - and that isolation is a "massive issue people don't often recognise".

Candidly, she added: "Honestly, I've never been as lonely as when I was a young, single mum.

Kim Trotter, of Future Female Society. Picture: Gregg Brown

KIm Trotter has spoken openly of her feelings of loneliness when she was a single mother - Credit: Archant

"There were times when it was crippling. You love your baby, but they're not going to be able to hold a conversation with you."

By founding the Future Female Society, Kim has since shown that mothers who feel isolated can go on to great things.

The community interest company aims to make Ipswich the "best place to be a women or girl in Suffolk", by "raising the personal and career aspirations of women and girls".

Its 10-week More Than Mum programme is credited with helping many facing feelings of despair transform their lives, with one saying it gave her "strength, hope and joy".

More Than Mum workshops in Suffolk are said to have given participants 'strength and hope'

More Than Mum workshops in Suffolk are said to have given participants 'strength and hope' - Credit: Future Female Society

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Now, the Future Female Society has been given Ipswich Borough Council funding for three More Than Mum workshops at Gainsborough Library, in Clapgate Lane.

Run by director of KMT Rising and Be Me Like We, Imani Sorhaindo, the sessions aim to show participants how they can have a "positive mindset" and "turn dreams into a reality".

Kim said: "Although being a mum can be rewarding, it can also be extremely isolating, lonely and frustrating - especially as a young mum.

The More Than Mum workshops have helped to transform many lives

The More Than Mum workshops have helped to transform many lives - Credit: Future Female Society

"It is therefore unsurprising that many young mums experience a loss of confidence as they think about who they really are, or start to question what else there is to life besides motherhood."

She said that More Than Mum "focuses on helping to build confidence and self-belief by developing skills and introducing young mothers to support networks that can help establish their next steps".

She added: "These could be finding employment, going into education, training or volunteering."

People can come to just one of the sessions or all three, with the option of going on to do the full 10-week More Than Mum programme afterwards.

She added: "It's natural for people to feel that it's maybe not for them - but I would say just try it, because you've got nothing to lose.

The full More Than Mum programme lasts 10 weeks

The full More Than Mum programme lasts 10 weeks - Credit: Future Female Society

"Anyone who's ever come to my workshops has said they were worried about coming - but they all find things that have been positive for them.

"I don 't care who you are, when you become a parent it is the biggest shock of your life.

"Before you become a mum, you are working and have a social life. Then, all of a sudden, you're at home.

"Particularly during the pandemic, the mental toll has been huge and, for women and young mums, there are especially difficult issues around confidence and self-esteem.

The Future Female Society is holding three More Than Mum workshops at Gainsborough Library

The Future Female Society is holding three More Than Mum workshops at Gainsborough Library - Credit: Future Female Society

"The whole thing about More Than Mum is helping women to find themselves again.

"The workshops are about how you think about yourself and how you think about your identity."

Although the workshops are free, booking is essential.

'The whole thing about More Than Mum is helping women to find themselves again,' says Kim Trotter

'The whole thing about More Than Mum is helping women to find themselves again,' says Kim Trotter - Credit: Future Female Society

Click here to book the first workshop, Making Me a Priority, which takes place at 12.30pm on Wednesday, September 8.

Click here to book the second workshop, Positive Mindset, which takes place at 12.30pm on Wednesday, September 15.

Click here to book the third workshop, Turning Dreams into Reality, which takes place at 12.30pm on Wednesday, September 22.

For more information about the Future Female Society, visit the website or call 01473 852552.

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