At the end of September, I had posted this Instagram to support National Diaper Need Awareness Week and the amount of support and feedback I received was overwhelming. Diaper Need is a real problem in our society and I think one that is surprising to a lot of people. According the new study Diaper Need and Its Impact on U.S. Families, by the National Diaper Bank Network and founding sponsor, Huggies, 1 in 3 families struggle to provide enough clean diapers for their children and almost 50% of families here in Chicago face that same battle. Having to decide between feeding or keeping your child in a clean diaper isn’t a choice anyone should have to make. It was also shocking to me that federal subsidies do not cover diapers and consider them a luxury item making the struggle even harder on those families.
Huggies realized how important this need was and hopes to raise awareness of diaper need in the U.S. while building up diaper banks across the country through the National Diaper Bank Network. Since its founding, the NDBN has grown from 40 to over 300 banks and the work they are doing is extraordinary. In order to ensure all babies receive the clean, dry diapers they need, Huggies has already donated more than 200 million diapers and wipes over the past six years to help families in need.
When I first started looking into how I could help, donation drives were my first stop. Since there had been several natural disasters in recent weeks, I was able to stop by several locations to drop off diapers and other needed supplies. Besides donating, I was also interested in getting involved as a volunteer locally in Chicago and seeing how I could not only help out but help spread the word on how others could get involved too.
I was put in touch with Jaron at Cradles to Crayons and the experience turned out to be both eye opening and amazing. Setting up a visit was seamless and the staff was so helpful, making the whole process simple and quick. The Giving Factory has volunteers come in for 2 hour shifts throughout the week and also offers one weekend day each month, which is great for families that want to help out. You can volunteer individually like I did or as a group and are welcome to bring any and all donations with you! If your company happens to do a volunteer day out this is a great organization to suggest!
Once I arrived, I was welcomed by staff and able to meet other volunteers. We took a little bit of time to create encouraging notes for the kids that they include in packs they create. I quickly learned my coloring skills are sub par but it was nice to meet the other volunteers and be able to contribute something fun.
After that, we got a quick overview of the Giving Factory and were all assigned different stations. I was part of the assembly line where we filled orders for the children in need. We would pick a sheet from the stack of requests and each would have a list of needs for that child. These forms can be submitted by a social worker, housing complex or by an emergency request for a child who has fled due to a natural disaster, domestic abuse or a refugee situation.
We tackled those ’emergency requests’ first and after those were filled got through several more! We would wheel our shopping carts around and check off the needs from the stocked shelves. Basically ‘shopping’ for the kids! We would then tie everything up in sacks, label them and then deposit them in the appropriate bin so they were ready for that particular organization to pick up. It was super simple but so effective and our group managed to get tons of packs ready and labeled.
During our shift, I was actually also able to help out with a shelter pick up and see how many supplies were going off to help people in need. If you happen to have anything that you may not be using around your house or in storage, I encourage you to check out the list of their approved donations and consider helping a family out either here in Chicago or in your local community! Diapers are a constant need as well as so many other basic supplies!
You can also learn more about easing diaper need and donate your Huggies Rewards points to help babies in need at Huggies.com/NoBabyUnhugged! If you have any questions at all about donation or getting involved feel free to leave a comment or send me a message and I am happy to help out!
The warehouse is huge and it’s so amazing to see all the donations and children being helped.
Board books are a great item to donate if you have any new or gently used!
Shopping for my kids with each list and packing everything up for them!
Helping with a local pick up!
This post is sponsored by Huggies. As always, all opinions are 100% my own and thank you for supporting brands that make Lows to Luxe possible!
Huggies – the fastest growing diaper brand in U.S. hospitals – believes deeply in the Power of Hugs, which is why every diaper and wipe is inspired by a parent’s embrace. The Huggies No Baby Unhugged program helps ensure all babies get the hugs they need to thrive by supporting hugging programs in hospitals and donating diapers across the country. Learn how you can help at Huggies.com/NoBabyUnhugged