Women’s Lunch Place’s (WLP) Mother’s Day cards have returned for a thirteenth year—still with the same goal of providing healthy, nutritious meals and services for women.
Each year, the card is designed by one of WLP’s guests. This year, the card was designed by Lillian Hunt along with local artist Janice Hayes-Cha.
Hunt had a “severe traumatic brain injury” ten years ago, according to WLP, and along with her husband, experienced temporary homelessness before finding permanent housing. Hunt’s husband’s health then began to decline, and the two were evicted for not being able to make rent.
Hunt’s husband was able to move into an assisted living unit, leaving Hunt homeless again, but she found WLP through her time at Pine Street Inn.
“Through five months of steady work with Doris, her WLP Advocate, Lillian was able to secure a one-bedroom apartment via Boston Medical Center’s ‘Elders Living at Home’ program,” the WLP website states.
“Women’s Lunch Place helps many women who are dealing with stressful housing and home-less circumstances,” Hunt said. “But we thrive thanks to their healthy meals and their Advo-cates’ positivity.”
The card created by Hunt ad Haye’s-Cha features a floral collage of cut-up greeting cards in pastel blues, yellows, pinks, and greens.
“The design was really fun—I was there watching the process,” Henry Morris, WLP’s Commu-nications & Marketing Manager, told the Sun. ‘They really got along,” he said, and “both kind of lost track of time. By the end of it, there was this beautiful card.”
Both this year’s and last year’s cards were in collaboration with Hayes-Cha, Morris said, add-ing that he believes “these cards do two things really well.” First, they raise funds for WLP—the goal this year is to raise enough money to provide 40,000 healthy meals. Each $25 card provides five healthy lunches for guests at WLP.
He also said the cards “bring people into our network. We have major donors now whose first look at WLP was a Mother’s Day card a decade ago.”
WLP also looks at these cards with the mindset that they are “honoring a woman in your life,” Morris said—not everyone has a mother to celebrate the holiday with, but there are many women in people’s lives who should be celebrated.
Additionally, WLP is running campaigns for the cards in several MBTA stations, including Ar-lington, Copley, and Back Bay Stations to spread the word even further.
The healthy meals are “just one aspect of it,” Morris said. He said that many people find out about WLP because the food is so delicious, as chefs come from places like the Cambridge Culinary Institute and Porto. Once women come for the food, they see the “breadth of ser-vices” WLP offers, such as yoga and dance classes, a walking group, substance use disorder recovery groups, smoking cessation groups, and more.
There are “all these programs for people to tap into,” Morris said.
These cards are always an important way to help WLP raise money to serve women, but it’s become especially important over the past two years. Morris said there has been a “53 per-cent increase in requests for help with housing,” and WLP has been hiring more and more ad-vocates to help with this work.
“The need is absolutely there,” he said. “We’re happy to have Mother’s Day cards as an ave-nue to help support that.”
To order WLP’s Mother’s Day cards, visit mothersdaycards.org, or physical cards can be purchased at Blackstone’s of Beacon Hill. WLP recommends placing your order by May 1 to ensure it arrives by Mother’s Day.
For more information about Women’s Lunch Place, visit womenslunchplace.org.