The three "Mamas" known as simply Paola, Gloria and Pilar, are together the founders of PACHMAMA, an organization they founded to provide both education, liberation and affordable child-care for their community in Bushwick, Brooklyn. To celebrate the first successful five months of their co-op, the trio and their members and volunteers from Sista II Sista held a part-celebration, part-fundraiser at a little known bar-lounge called Mamajuana located at 220 Leonard St. between Powers and Grand St. in Williamsburg.

Afro-Brazilian Beats and old-school salsa played on late into the eve as Pachamama set up shop with homemade food ranging from paellas to empanadas, asking for modest donations of 0.50 to $4.00. Their cuisine was as amazing as their ideas about how to provide for themselves and their community:

"We strongly feel the need for mothers," says Gloria and Pilar, "who want to do it, build a safe creative space and a collective community, for themselves… "

Beyond affordable daycare, the cooperative also makes available to the mamas, a chance to empower each other, a mobilized unit that shares resources and knowledge; offering workshops for both adults and kids in the arts, dance and music as well as workshops and information sessions on housing, healthcare and education.

"Priscilla, [the young woman over there] was the one who came up with the idea about a year ago, and seven months later, with self-determination- we have a total of fourteen children being taken care of by mothers in the Bushwick community, providing services we weren't able to have before."

The co-op located at 89 St. Nicholas Ave. shares its space with Sista II Sista, a Black-Latino womens organization located just above in the same building. Sista II Sista, a larger collective network, was founded a few months before Pachamama and has branches in Harlem and another Brooklyn location. The two groups seemed fated to celebrate their openings together along with the bar-lounge Mamajuana as the bartender Michelle a fiery strawberry blonde, expressed that it had only been open for about five months and was now enjoying a steady growth in business.

"It's been a little slow in the beginning, but it's picking up. The place is really great- made up the drink menu myself; try the 'Sneak Up On You,' the Calperina or maybe our Mojito."

PACHAMAMA and Sista II Sista are currently attempting to help other groups form their own co-ops in Bed-Stuy and parts of Queens and Manhattan. To learn about opportunities to support and donate, you can contact the mamas at: 718 3660 2450 or at