This is a guest post by Sarah Shoemake, a member of the Emerging Leaders Committee.
Last Saturday, 15 Emerging Leaders sorted and inspected clothing donations, filled orders, and created clothing bags at Westside Baby, playing their part in United Way’s mission to support families and give kids an equal chance from birth to graduation – and beyond. Westside Baby is a non-profit that collects, inspects and distributes donations such as diapers, clothing, cribs and safety gear for free to other non-profits and agencies who in turn deliver them to low-income families.
Our favorite fun fact? The organization provides each family with 43 diapers per month. This number allows them to be able to fill every single diapers request Westside Baby receives in a year, without having to turn away any family’s request. If you are a parent or have cared for children, you know this is not enough to get through a month, but it can absolutely help alleviate that severe burden on a family with very little resources.
One Emerging Leader, Danielle, explained what a unique and wonderful experience it was. “While sorting through donated clothing, we were able to greet and thank donors as they stopped by to drop off gifts of clothing, toys, and diapers. One family dropped off a car full of diapers that they had collected for their one-year-old twins 1st birthday party. What a cool thing to do!”
It was a fun and busy three hours of sorting clothes and filling orders, while getting to know and receiving tips from the half-dozen long-term volunteers working alongside us. We sorted through almost 5 full large bins of newly donated items, and fulfilled dozens of personalized orders for families.
We’ll definitely be back to help support young families with the essentials they need be stable and thrive!