Oxford Sling Meet is 5 years old this month – it was February 2008 when Peggy and I met each other on the Sling Meet website and arranged a get-together at Rose Hill children’s centre playroom. It was the first time I’d ever met someone on the internet before a real-life encounter, but it turned out we had grown up in the same small part of the world. We didn’t know it yet, but both of us had had the idea to start a sling library. A couple of other babywearing mums came too – one of them was Melanie, who provided the energy and nous we needed to start a proper group. A couple of months later, Catherine had moved to Oxfordshire bringing us IndigoBird’s gorgeous web design and a lot of fluffy enabling. We formed a committee, wrote a constitution, opened a bank account – and the rest is beautiful babywearing history!
Over the years we’ve grown from a small social gathering of happy babywearers to a busy organization running a large sling library, a thriving monthly social meet and regular workshops. We’ve been through various changes as we’ve tried to meet demand and respond to what our members have said they liked and what they wanted us to do differently. Our aims are still the same as they were five years ago – to provide a space for sharing babywearing skills and to spread the sling love.
Thank you to all our other committee members, past and present – Lou, Emily, Zayna, Meg, Jenny, all the volunteers and everyone else who has helped us over the years. Thank you to our families, for being our live demo models and putting up with bags of slings in the lounge. And thank you to everyone who’s ever come to a meet – there are hundreds of you! You and your little ones are the reason we’re still here.