MGF is my greatest non-child-husband love. It is my 5th baby. I love it more than anything else I’m not related to. I want it to be the best it can be. That’s why I’ve decided to make some changes to MGF to make it better and stronger and to make all our lives less cluttered.
From November 1st, MGF will split into two group.
Mummy’s Gin Fund – the existing group will be for parenting chat only.
MGF Buy & Sell – a new group for buying, selling, swapping maternity, baby and kids clothes, toys, equipment, stuff.
We will still have Mother’s Little Helper which is staying exactly as it is: non-parenting related chat and sales.
Picture the scene (it won’t be hard)….
You’ve just sat down with a group of pals and you’re really excited about having a good old chin-wag. The drinks have arrived and you’re dying to quiz your mate about the date she had last week, catch up on your friend’s exciting work news or pick their brains about your kid’s latest ‘phase’. You settle down, dive straight into the convo, get three sentences in and then it starts. The constant interruptions: ‘muuuuum, I can’t find that thing I has 10 seconds ago’, ‘muuuuuuuum, why is the sky blue?’, ‘muuuuuuuum, do you think Mr Bloom is really from up north?’, etc., etc.
You try to bat them away or bribe them with sweets, a late night or a one of your own kidneys but they won’t stop. You never get to make the point you wanted to, you have no idea if your pal is going to see her new chap again and you definitely didn’t get to properly chew the fat about anything. Everyone leaves unsatisfied and frustrated and what would’ve been a great chat ends up as a brief, superficial, interrupted catch-up.
Or what about this:
Little Johnny has a birthday coming up and you REALLY need to get some presents in before you end up doing the ‘mad-birthday-morning-post-school-run-dash-of-shame’ to Sainsbury’s to grab something vaguely suitable. You have your shopping list ready, you’ve had 3 wees and paid extra to the childminder to keep your youngest for a couple of hours so you can hit the shops. You’re in mad dash: at £15 per hour in childcare and £4 per hour in carparking, the shopping trip is likely to bankrupt you. It’s swimming lessons straight after school so your window of opportunity is short and immovable.
You sprint from shop to shop but EVERYONE wants to stop you for a chat. You’re commandeered at every checkout and captured on every corner. Suddenly, you’re the most popular person in town and you just want to get on with grabbing ugly, overpriced, expensive stuff and get to Costa so you can actually drink a hot cuppa for the first time that month week.
So, how will the split help?
We want you to be able to chat to each other, uninterrupted. The conversations we have on MGF are important, and sometimes life changing, so we want you to be able to concentrate on listening and responding to each other. Genuine conversation is what builds communities and makes the magic happen. Sometimes, these really important dialogues or requests for help or support are lost as the group moves so quickly. We want to make sure that #nomumleftbehind is a reality.
My amazing admin team and I have thought very long and very hard about this and genuinely believe that it will make MGF stronger, more fun and less cluttered. Without the sales posts, conversations will flow. Banter will be rife, support will be forthcoming and friendships and cheer-leading will blossom. Things will move slower.
Without the chat, sales posts will be uninterrupted, easier to navigate and it will be quicker and easier to find what you are looking for. Things will move slower.
We strongly encourage everyone to be members of both MGF groups but it’s not compulsory; you are welcome to stay in one or both. If you live away from SE London but still value the recommendations and advice: Mummy’s Gin Fund is for you. If you want to turn up, sell your stuff and get the hell out without talking about babies: MGF Buy & Sell has your name all over it.
As you can imagine, managing such a big change in a group of over 30,000 members – and at the mercy of the Facebook algorithms – is a bit of a challenge (!).
Want to hang out in the Mummy’s Gin Fund chat group? Don’t do anything. Just stay where you are, you’re already in it.
Want to join the MGF Buy & Sell group? Brill – send a join request here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/buysellmgf/. If you are a member of the existing MGF, you will automatically be added to the group. You won’t be able to post in it until November 1st though.
Fancy joining Mother’s Little Helper? Same people, same vibe, non-parenting stuff: https://www.facebook.com/groups/503056033137012/
What’s the plan?
- Now – send a join request to MGF Buy & Sell – https://www.facebook.com/groups/buysellmgf/
- Carry on as normal until October 31st.
- From November 1st – post your chats, recommendations, questions, advice in Mummy’s Gin Fund.
- From November 1st – post your items for sale / giving away in MGF Buy & Sell: https://www.facebook.com/groups/buysellmgf/
- From November 1st – for two weeks only – all posts will be moderated before going live. This means that only the right posts go into each group. Although this sounds like a total pain in the backside, a bit of short-term pain will really help the long-term gain. I have recruited an extra big team of MGF moderators to help make sure that posts are approved really quickly.
We will be holding your hands!
Although this whole thing sounds like a logical nightmare, I have an amazing squad of admins and moderators ready to help make the transition as smooth as possible. We will be posting regular reminders in all the groups to help the message get to as many people as possible.
We won’t be deleting like crazy because – from November 1st – we will only approve posts that are in the right group (for 2 weeks whilst we settle in). If you make a mistake – which is bound to happen as we are all getting used to the new setup – we will let you know and help you get the right post in the right group. We promise to make this as smooth as possible; please try your best to help us out as much as possible.
Finally, to make the Buy & Sell group even better, we will be asking everyone to add a #postcode to the title of their post (i.e. #SE6 or #SE13) – this will make everything easier to search for. More about that in another blog though.
We imagine it might be a bit of carnage to begin with but, I promise, it will be totally worth the angst once we’ve all settled into the new groups. Go back to my scenario – imagine being able to have a proper conversation without all the interruptions. Or being able to shop without being distracted by all the chats.
As always, I’m happy to answer any questions or respond to comments.
Thanks so much for being part of #teamginfund.
Q – So, tell me again what I have to do.
A – Join MGF Buy & Sell ready for the switch on November 1st: https://www.facebook.com/groups/buysellmgf/. You won’t be able to post in that group yet. Carry on as normal until then.
Q – Are you closing Mummy’s Gin Fund?
A – No, it’s becoming a chat only group. The sales are moving to MGF Buy & Sell.
Q – What about sales posts that are already in MGF?
A – They won’t be deleted. From November 1st, you can finish off any sales that have already started, but you won’t be able to add any new ones.
Q – Is it going to be carnage?
A – It’s going to be a big job, but we’ve planned the split well and I have a great admin and moderator team who will help everyone (and I’ve stockpiled some decent Gin).
Q – Why can’t I post in MGF Buy & Sell right now?
A – You can join MGF Buy & Sell but you won’t be able to post there until November 1st.
Q – How do I post my sales posts in MGF Buy & Sell?
A – Same as before but please add a #postcode in the title to help people search for things in their area – for example, #SE12, #SE6.
Q – Why are you going to pre-approve all the posts from November 1st?
A – With over 30,000 members in the groups, it’s going to be hard to get the message out to everyone and for everyone to remember it. That’s why – for two weeks only – we will pre-approve all the posts before they go live. This means that we won’t have to constantly delete posts that are in the wrong group which would drive everyone crazy. It’s a way of helping everyone get used to the new groups. It’s only temporary and we will have a big team of moderators ready to approve or redirect posts quickly.
Q – What about businesses who want to post in Mummy’s Gin Fund?
A – As always, businesses must be registered as an Official MGF Recommended Business through our website. Full details are here: www.mummysginfund.co.uk/advertising. This page is currently with the web developer who is creating an online form so businesses can register online which will make everyone’s life easier. Watch this space!
Q – Where should I post:
- A question about schools – Mummy’s Gin Fund
- A request for recommendations for a great park – Mummy’s Gin Fund
- Advice about how to treat chicken pox – Mummy’s Gin Fund
- A funny story about your child – Mummy’s Gin Fund
- A recommendation for swimming lessons – Mummy’s Gin Fund
- A question about the best highchair to buy – Mummy’s Gin Fund
- A parenting meme that made you laugh – Mummy’s Gin Fund
- A coat for sale- MGF Buy & Sell
- A request for a pushchair – MGF Buy & Sell
- Giving away a travel cot – MGF Buy & Sell
- A dining room table for sale – Mother’s Little Helper
- A question about estate agents – Mother’s Little Helper
- Adult clothes for sale – Mother’s Little Helper
- A recommendation for an osteopath – Mother’s Little Helper
- Grown up chat – Mother’s Little Helper
- Jokes that make you laugh – Mother’s Little Helper
- Articles that interest you and aren’t anything to do with parenting – Mother’s Little Helper