Having a baby is a pivotal moment in every sister's life, regardless of whether it is her first or her tenth, she needs and deserves to be able to recover and transition into motherhood without having to fulfill the demands of cooking for herself and her family. Something so simple and easy for those sisters who are able to volunteer, can bring such an immense relief to the new mother.
A meal train is basically a roster shared between sisters, who commit to cooking and delivering to the new mother and her family a nourishing home-cooked meal in the first weeks after she gives birth.
If the mother has engaged the services of a doula, she will most likely organise this for her.. However if she doesn’t have a doula, she can ask a close sister or family member to organise this for her when she gives birth inshaa'Allah.
They may send a message out to the sisters close circle, who can fill in the roster days that suit them, then the final roster is sent back to the mother, and there we have it – the essence of sisterhood and love for Allah’s sake, granted to our sisters at one of their most crucial times.
Hold up! If you are a new mother or mother-to-be and reading this, don’t feel bad (as we women tend to feel when help is offered!). Realise that in this perfect religion of Islam, going out of our way for a sister, helping her in her time of need, relieving her burden and assisting in her recovery; are ways to attain the pleasure of our Lord. Would you really deprive your sisters of the opportunity to gain rewards?
Of course, it’s not necessary for every mother. Some have very helpful families, in-laws and friends who already make sure the mother is resting, and that her and her family are fed well while she recovers.
Our aim is to make this a reality for all sisters when they give birth, and strengthen our bonds of sisterhood in as many aspects as we can. Who better would understand what an immense help this would be, other than another mother?
I've noticed that with meal trains there is a chain reaction; the mothers who received them, become the most eager (once back on their feet) to return the favour to those sisters who give birth after them.
Let’s get this happening! Start a meal train for a sister you know who has just given birth or plan one for a sister due to give birth soon! Bismillah!
Here is a generic message you can use to copy and paste:
Assalaamu alaykum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh, as you know our dear sister (name) has given birth to her new baby (boy/girl) Alhamdulillah!
We are so happy for her Allahumma barik feeha and wish to help relieve her during this precious time of recovery and bonding with her baby.
Inshaa'Allah we are hoping to organise a meal train for (name), where we each choose a day from a roster that suits us and we prepare a wholesome meal for her and her family (specify number of other children) and deliver it to the doorstep. (Note any allergies here).
If you would like to put your name down: please copy and paste the roster, insert your name on the date you would like to cook, and post it back to the group/send back to me, Please don't feel obliged if you are unable, we understand every sister has her own personal and family commitments.
May Allah reward you for helping your sister in Islam and help you in your time of need Ameen!