Our First Diaper Drive Is A Success
As unemployment and increasing costs of basic needs further strain the finances of low-income families, one in three families struggle to provide diapers for their babies.
On United Way’s Day of Action, held each year on June 21— the first day of summer and longest day of the year— volunteers unite to address pressing community challenges and to make a difference in people’s lives.
This year, however, United Way of Williamson County decided to change things up a bit. We recognize that diapers are an ongoing and critical need among families and seniors across our community.
So, from June 1st through June 15th, we held a Diaper Drive called Taking Care of the Bottom Line. During the drive, we invited community and corporate friends to deliver diapers for infants, as well as absorbent undergarments for seniors. Several friends paired their diapers with baby wipes, too.
Through the collaboration of our partners and friends, we amassed 18,184 diapers and absorbent undergarments! Corporate partners such as Atmos Energy (Mid-State Division) rallied their employees to collect a total of 3,428 diapers. And Medical Reimbursements of America (MRA) collected 2,632. We also had a big delivery from Trexis Insurance. In addition, Gränges Americas, Principal Financial Group (Central States Business Center), Auto-Owner’s Insurance, Gallagher, Aetna, Life Lessons/Brentwood United Methodist Church, and NAI Nashville all helped in making our first Diaper Drive a success. We appreciate your generosity and support!
Significance of the Diaper Drive
Government safety-net programs do not recognize diapers as a basic need, so individuals and families cannot purchase diapers with SNAP (food stamps) benefits or Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) vouchers. Most child care facilities require parents to provide a day’s supply of disposable diapers (four to six changes a day). It can cost over $100 per month for an adequate supply of diapers. This ongoing expense is challenging for those who are struggling to make ends meet.
When caregivers run low on supplies, they have to make tough decisions that may result in:
- babies or seniors spending the entire day in a single diaper/undergarment
- discomfort that causes a baby to cry more, which can increase the risk of abuse and neglect
- increased health problems, including diaper rash and hepatitis
- foregoing free or subsidized childcare and early childhood programs that require diapers
- avoiding work or school on a consistent basis, which increases economic instability.
Rather than providing diapers directly to caregivers in need, our Strategic Initiatives team is distributing all donations to our Partner Agencies, including (but not limited to) Community Child Care Center, Mid-Cumberland Human Resource Agency, Nurses for Newborns, and Waves, Inc. This allows our partners to interact with families in need and connect them to additional resources.
Although we’ve wrapped up the Diaper Drive, know that you are welcome to join us for the following efforts:
Stuff the Bus – Our annual school supply drive accelerates learning and education by ensuring that students do not have to worry about whether they have adequate school supplies. You are welcome to deliver school supply donations to our office during normal business hours. We particularly need composition books, glue sticks, index cards, and highlighters. Supplies will be distributed to students from grades K–12 during two Backpack Giveaway events on Saturday, August 4. We also welcome pre-event and event-day volunteers. Click here for volunteer sign-up.
Days of Caring – September 20-21: Leverage the caring power of your co-workers to help us complete community volunteer projects. Click here to sign-up.