The last few months have been very emotionally, physically and spiritually hard for many families across the U.S. and in neighboring countries. With the devastating effects of Hurricane Irma and Hurricane Maria, families have been impacted greatly and have experienced various losses, including basic supplies to care for their children. Amongst those affected, are also those families, who struggle with diaper need on a regular basis.
The National Diaper Bank Network and founding sponsor Huggies announced a study, Diaper Need and Its Impact on U.S. Families, revealing that one-in-three U.S. families (36%) continue to struggle with diaper need– the lack of enough diapers to keep a baby or toddler clean, dry and healthy. Roughly three-in-four of all families (73%) feel they’re not being good parents when their children are left too long in a dirty diaper, while one third of households in need experience feeling stressed or overwhelmed by diapering always or often. Diaper need is a critical issue affecting neighborhoods across the U.S. It’s an issue facing many parents and it stretches across various demographics. Whether residing in the city or suburb, diaper need is affecting neighbors, families and friends.
During Diaper Need Awareness week, I had a wonderful opportunity to meet an inspirational woman who is helping families overcome the diaper need obstacle in Central Florida. Sharon Lyles, is the CEO of Second Chance Baby Resource Center at 1041 Crown Park Circle, Winter Garden, Florida 34787 and Second Chance Baby Resource Center is a member of the NDBN.
What is Second Chance Baby Resource Center?
Established in 1997, Sharon has held an outside full-time job, managed personal and professional responsibilities, while at the same time being a beacon of hope, resources and education for countless parents in need. Sharon is truly a one-woman powerhouse. With consistent and heartfelt dedication, she has serviced the Central Florida community with integrity, love, compassion and genuine care. What started as a way to give back to parents in need in her local church, has become one of the fastest growing non-profit resource centers for families with partners like NBDN/Huggies, City of Winter Garden, Second Harvest Food Bank of Central Florida, and United Way. The City of Winter Garden officially proclaimed the week of September 25 – October 1, Diaper Need Awareness Week, thanks to the efforts of Sharon and Second Chance Baby Resource Center.
With just a small group of volunteers, the Second Chance Baby Resource Center is serving local families to help them become more self-reliant, to strengthen their families and create stability for their children.
In 2016, Second Chance Baby Resource Center distributed over:
- 37,000 Diapers
- 2,700 lbs. of Formula/Food
- 342 Pieces of Clothing
How Second Chance Baby Resource Center Helps Families
The vision of Second Chance Baby Resource Center is to promote self- sufficiency for parents and their children who are at risk due to homelessness, financial, unemployment or other circumstances beyond their control by identifying needs and providing the appropriate resources. In a one room office, the walls are lined with boxes of diapers, wipes, baby food and baby clothing. Through a partnership with Second Harvest Food Bank, volunteers weekly pick up groceries like fresh produce, meats and canned goods to provide their clients meal assistance.
They help to provide the following to parents in need:
- Diapers and Baby Wipes
- Baby Food
- Baby Formula
- Infant and Toddler Clothing
- Agency referrals
- Informational Resources
They offer many programs and resources to help families succeed in all aspects of parenting such as:
- Healthy Babies – Promotes the well-being, healthy growth and development of babies through the provision of diapers, wipes, baby food, infant and toddler clothing.
- Hunger Relief – Assures that families are able to meet their babies’ nutritional daily needs with the food pantry.
- Parent Academy– Meets quarterly and engages monologue for parents to learn about parenting, child development, community resources, health, nutrition, education, life skills and career development.
Clients are informed about the Second Chance Baby Resource Center through many community, charitable and government organizations, i.e. Mom Care (Florida Medicaid), WIC, Hospitals, Community Health Center, 211, DFC, Dept. of Health, Website/Social Media and Word of Mouth.
Dispelling Myths about Diaper Need
90% of those that the Second Chance Baby Resource Center serves are working parents who are often struggling paycheck to paycheck. For those that do receive governmental assistance, often parents must cut back on utilities or child care to provide diapers Federal subsidy programs do not cover the cost of diapers. Little, if any money, is available to purchase enough diapers to keep a baby clean, dry, and healthy.
Diaper banks are a great resource for families in need. It costs approximately $936.00 per year to provide diapers for a newborn baby. Daycare facilities require that parents supply disposable diapers and wipes for their children. Of families in diaper need, three-in-five parents (57%) miss work or school due to a lack of sufficient diapers required by childcare, day care or early education programs to care for a baby or toddler. As a result, parents experiencing diaper need missed an average of four days of work or school in the past month.
How You Can Help
As the founding sponsor of the National Diaper Bank Network since 2011, Huggies No Baby Unhugged has provided ongoing support for the organization and has donated more than 200 million diapers and baby wipes, including critical donations during times of crisis.
To Help Those in Need:
- Support the National Diaper Bank Network by making a monetary contribution at nationaldiaperbanknetwork.org, visit a local diaper bank or even host a diaper drive.
- Donate your Huggies Rewards Points to the National Diaper Bank Network by visiting huggies.com/NoBabyUnhugged.
Product Donation to Second Chance Baby Resource Center:
- Disposable Diapers and Pull-Ups (all sizes). Only unopened packages can be accepted.
- Baby Wipes. Only unopened packages can be accepted.
- Baby Food – Assorted Baby Food, Water and Juice.
- Baby formula- Enfamil and Similac.
- Infant to toddler age children’s clothing and shoes.
- Gift cards for Walmart, Target, Publix, Gas and entertainment.
- Layette gift sets for newborns, gift baskets for new mom’s.
- Paper Products (Toilet Paper, Paper Towels).
- Liquid soap, toothpaste, hygiene products and dish/laundry detergent.
Volunteer at Second Chance Baby Resource Center:
- Sponsor an event (baby shower, diaper drive, food drive, back to school)
- Sort clothing and diapers
- Sponsor a Family
- Social Media
- Event Greeters
- Distribute flyers
Monetary Donation to Second Chance Baby Resource Center:
- Donate at any time at scbaby.org/donate.html
Anyone can truly make a difference! All infants and toddlers deserve to start life with a solid foundation to reach their full potential. It’s easy to help volunteer and donate to keep children clean, dry and healthy and fight diaper need for all families.
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. #HuggiesCouncil #ad
Joscelyn, Owner of Mami of Multiples & Mami Innovative Media
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