Netmums founders from Harrow named in New Year's honour list

Harrow Times: Sally Russell, Cathy Court, Siobhan Freegard Sally Russell, Cathy Court, Siobhan Freegard

The founders of a website which helps and supports mums across the country have been awarded OBEs for services to families.

Sarah Russell, Cathy Court and Siobhan Freegard founded Netmums after meeting at a Harrow toddler group in 2000.

Since then the website, which offers parenting advice and support on a range of issues, has attracted more than 1.6million members.

Siobhan Freegard, 46, who still lives in Harrow, said: “We are privileged and thrilled to accept the awards – but it isn’t for the founders, it’s for the Netmums staff and all the Netmums members who provide invaluable support and make the site what it is.

“Prior to Netmums, parenting could be a lonely existence but we are delighted the success of our site means no mum or dad has to feel isolated or unhappy ever again.”

Co-founder Sally Russell, 47, of Watford, said: “Parenting doesn’t come with a manual but Netmums is the closest thing to having a community of supportive friends carrying you through the daily ups and downs.

“Netmums has created a 'movement', giving mums a voice locally and nationally, at a time in their lives when women often feel disempowered.

“Because of our work post-natal depression is no longer a shameful secret but something parents talk about openly, lessening the stigma and ensuring more families get help fast.”

The site was first set up by first time mums Ms Freegard and Ms Russell who both suffered from post-natal depression and wanted to connect mums in North West London.

The website has also been at the forefront of some high profile campaigns including the need for better treatment for post-natal depression and calling for clearer labelling of children’s food.

The national website now has 151 local websites offering information to mums and dads about their community.

Comments (2)

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1:38pm Tue 31 Dec 13

Husain Akhtar says...

Well done!

Sorry for the Harrow hopefuls who missed the list yet again!
Well done! Sorry for the Harrow hopefuls who missed the list yet again! Husain Akhtar

1:01pm Sun 5 Jan 14

Sonoo Malkani says...

Brilliant Netmums !You provide such a wonderful service and richly deserve this award.
Brilliant Netmums !You provide such a wonderful service and richly deserve this award. Sonoo Malkani

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