WellMama Staff and Volunteers
Emily E. Little, Ph.D.
Emily completed her Ph.D. at University of California, San Diego, in psychology. Her research examines maternal-infant interaction and health behavior from a cultural and psychological perspective. She is a lactation educator and babywearing consultant, and she has conducted research and designed maternal health outreach programs around the world. Most recently, Emily managed a project funded by the Gates Foundation that aimed to design culturally-appropriate community health services for mothers in rural India.
Emily is the founder of Nurturely, a nonprofit organization that conducts research related to breastfeeding and postpartum depression. Through Nurturely and other organizations, Emily brings almost a decade of nonprofit leadership experience to WellMama.
After working internationally for several years, Emily is excited to be working locally with WellMama to improve our systems of societal support for new and expectant parents here in the United States.
Jessica is focused on the health of women and children, specifically during their reproductive years. She comes from a background in Women & Gender Studies and Nonprofit Management from the University of Oregon. Her background consists of being a licensed massage therapist, specializing in pregnancy and postpartum clients, as well as a certified Infant Massage Instructor and a certified Birth Doula.
Jessica started with WellMama as a client, needing postpartum anxiety support after the birth of her second daughter. She has 3 young kiddos that keep her really busy and invested in the community. She believes pregnancy, birth, infancy, and/or adoption are part of a uniquely formative time in life that has profound and long-lasting implications.
Jessica began volunteering with WellMama, wanting to give back to an organization and with families who were there to support her when she needed. Her position expanded when she was hired as WellMama’s Volunteer Coordinator and now as Program Director. She loves working closely with the wonderful group of WellMama volunteers who continuously provide such wonderful support for families in our area.
Natalie has been a WellMama volunteer since September 2013. She started as a warm line volunteer and now helps to develop and facilitate training for new volunteers. Her first experiences with WellMama were as a support group attendee, following the birth of her first son. She was struck by the capacity of mothers to support one another through the highs and lows of new parenthood, and wanted to reciprocate the support she had received. Natalie is a psychotherapist in private practice. She specializes in helping women with the challenges of motherhood, including mood and anxiety disorders during pregnancy and the postpartum period.
Jen found out about WellMama when she was pregnant and knew she would be prone to postpartum depression and anxiety because she had a strong history of dealing with depression and anxiety. She started attending support groups right after she had Liam and received amazing support. She knew that she wanted to help and give back. Jen attended a volunteer training and has been a volunteer for a year now. Jennifer was accepted to Portland State University’s MSW program, where she plans to become a therapist for children and adolescents. She plans to stay on the Warm Line and make it to events when she is able to.
“I love WellMama. I had so many feelings after having Liam, but I knew I would get through it. As a single mom, I struggled and didn’t have much support or help after about the first month. I have done this completely on my own and I have to say I am proud of myself.
Please do not hesitate to reach out if you need. We are here to help. Do not give up.”
Heather is a WellMama volunteer on the warm line and the facilitator of the Wednesday Parenting Now! Support group. She is a University of Oregon graduate with a degree in Sociology and a Postpartum Doula. She originally came to WellMama as a client when she attended a support group after the birth of her son while suffering from Postpartum Depression and Anxiety. She now has two young children that keep her very busy and active.
Heather is passionate about maternal mental health and ending the stigma that surrounds it. Being able to give back and assist women walking a familiar path to hers, gives her great fulfillment and understanding.
Visit Heather’s support website at peacefulnestpostpartum.com.
WellMama Volunteer Grant Writer
Kristine moved to Eugene in 2013 and wanted to get involved in her new community. The mother of three mostly-grown sons, Kristine suffered depression and rage every time she was pregnant and wanted to support other women in ways she had not been supported. When she discovered WellMama, she knew she’d found a venue to express her passion for ensuring women receive the support they need to move through and past these often unexpected, misunderstood, and unwanted emotions. Kristine works closely with WellMama’s Executive Director and Board members on grant writing and fundraising. She holds a doctorate in psychology and is the director of planning, research, and evaluation at a local education consulting firm.
Kristine’s free time is spent on her volunteer passions, her family and friends, reading, and enjoying the products of Oregon’s amazing vineyards.
Rachel has been rooted in the Eugene community for 25 years and works with expecting and new families as a birth doula. Through her direct work with new families, Rachel sees just how many women (and men) suffer from postpartum depression, anxiety, and other mood disorders and strives to offer support, and hope, to those moving through this trying time. Rachel volunteers on the Warmline and helps with events and administrative tasks as needed. Rachel believes deeply in the power of peer support and is thrilled to be part of the WellMama team, connecting families to real, tangible support and resources to help ease the transition into parenthood.
Lillian loves to spend time with blossoming families. Over the years, she’s found ways to do this via teaching prenatal and postpartum yoga, childbirth classes and infant massage; as a birth doula and postpartum doula; and leading WellMama’s Parenting Now! support group for 4 years. In an ongoing goal to simplify her life, she now spends her time with young families by supporting them as a postpartum doula (privately and through Daisy CHAIN) and teaching infant massage (privately and through WellMama). She loves her weekly FaceTime reading time with her granddaughter in Massachusetts, sewing items for her little business Apronville, managing her large flock of chicken and ducks, and growing beautiful things in her always expanding perennial gardens.
Visit Lillian’s support website at birthing-years-transitions.com.
My first experience with Wellmama was in 2015 during my pregnancy and post partum period. It was a very difficult time. The support I received from Wellmama was instrumental in helping my recovery. Once I started feeling better, I knew I wanted to stay involved with the Wellmama community. Since then, I’ve had several roles within the organization. I’ve volunteered for the Warm Line and email support, facilitated support groups, and ran the online chat group. Currently my primary role is community outreach. I work to raise awareness about perinatal mental health and Wellmama’s services at local community events. I also moderate our private Facebook support group. My other interests include reading, creative writing, listening to podcasts, and spending time with my family.