Hot Mess Express Aroostook County chapter leader Amanda Thrlin poses with cleaning materials to help families in need on December 13, 2021, in Madawaska. Credit: Emily Jenkins / St. John Valley Times

MADAWASKA, Maine — A Madawaska woman is bringing Hot Mess Express, a national volunteer-based group that helps parents who struggle with daily tasks, to Aroostook County.

Group members nominate families in need and provide cleaning products, advice on organization, motivational support and even assist those families in completing household chores such as laundry, vacuuming or dishes.

The group was founded on Facebook by North Carolina native and TikTok star Jen Hamilton, who said she felt an urgency to help her fellow mothers who may be dealing with life situations that feel out of control. In less than four months, the group spread to more than 180 different locations nationwide and has more than 20,000 members. 

“Hot Mess Express is a group of women who are here to rescue each other when we can’t seem to dig ourselves out of our funk,” Hamilton said. “Whatever seems overwhelming to you … let us help.”

Amanda Thrlin of Madawaska followed Hamilton on TikTok and decided to start a chapter in Aroostook County — only with a twist. Thrlin’s Hot Mess group supports all kinds of families who may be struggling, including all single, new or stay-at-home moms and dads in the area.

“I wanted my group to be more inclusive because there’s dads out there that get overwhelmed too,” Thrlin said, “It’s to bring the community together. Everybody helping everybody.”

An advocate for helping others to find ambition, Thrlin said the group will have events such as Motivational Mondays where members are encouraged to come together and share what motivates them to “get to work.”

Thrlin is gathering volunteers and so far the group has more than 20 members. The group is funded by donations which take care of the costs of cleaning products, totes, labels – whatever will help families get on top of their house-care needs.

“We haven’t received any nominations yet, but we have a Venmo account set up for anyone who would like to donate.”

Hot Mess Express – Aroostook County is a public page on Facebook that anyone can join. Thrlin encourages everyone — regardless of age or gender — to join if they want.

“Everyone has a way they can contribute if they want to, even if it’s how to get a stain out of a shirt,” she said.