PHILADELPHIA, Pennsylvania (WPVI) -- "I couldn't believe that my mommy journey that I thought was supposed to be so beautiful turned out to be a nightmare," said Ashley Clement. "It was a tumultuous pregnancy and labor. I almost didn't survive."
Clement, 30, gave birth to her first son, Nathan, in 2018. After suffering from postpartum depression and heart failure, she felt like she had nowhere to go for help. Then, she was encouraged by her faith to create her own village.
"I didn't have many resources around me or friends, so I felt like I was alone," she said. "So, that is why we created 'Mama, Get Up' as a faith-based nonprofit, to help encourage mothers, empower them and let them feel that they're cared for and loved."
Founded in 2019, the nonprofit hosts pop-up diaper and clothing drives, prayer sessions, and other community activities. Clement also uses social media to reach local moms with positive and encouraging messages. This coming January, she plans on beginning to host "mommy groups."
Today, a diaper drive was held at Grand Entrance Event Space in North Philadelphia with the help of The Greater Philadelphia Diaper Bank.
"This ministry is a blessing to parents, grandparents, caregivers of all ages," said Brenda Tillery, a grandmother of two from West Oak Lane. "It's a blessing to the community because it meets a basic need."
Young mothers especially find the outreach to be irreplaceable.
"It can be tiring, overwhelming at most times, especially when you have three kids in diapers and you have to pay for, you know, three sets of diapers," said Candace Sorrell from West Philadelphia.
Sorrell and her husband had their third child, Nathaniel, just 19 months ago. At birth, he was diagnosed with bilateral sensorineural hearing loss.
Despite having a support system close to home, Sorrell says that even strangers can play a pivotal role in their journey.
"You do need that outside group to continue going on," she said.