Written by: Post-Crescent Media
June 21, 2014
Hundreds of infants and toddlers — and their families — have a much better chance to stay healthy, thanks to the consistently amazing generosity of Post-Crescent Media readers in the Fox Cities.
The 2014 “Dollars for Diapers” Do It! Community Challenge concluded Friday with $36,431.46 in hand at the Community Foundation for the Fox Valley Region, and another $5,000 donation en route from Kimberly-Clark Corp., the global consumer products company with roots in the Fox Cities.
The $41,431.46 donation total supports the Fox Cities Diaper Bank, founded in 2011 by United Way Fox Cities to provide supplementary disposable diapers to low-income families.
“Kimberly-Clark and the Huggies Brand is delighted to donate $5,000 to … the Fox Cities’ ‘Dollars for Diapers’ campaign,” said Misha Pardubicka-Jenkins, Brand Director–Huggies.
“We remain committed to this important cause as founding sponsor of the National Diaper Bank Network and have donated more than 100 million diapers to that organization. We’re thrilled to make sure that every little bottom is covered in the Fox Valley, a place we are proud to call our home.”
The 2014 campaign, with a $30,000 goal, was the third Do It! campaign for the diaper bank, and trails only the 2011 campaign ($62,500) in donations.
“This means that we will be able to help over 500 struggling families every month in our community provide diapers for their babies,” said Peter C. Kelly, president and CEO of United Way Fox Cities. “We will stock the diaper bank with over 205,000 diapers because of the campaign.”
Disposable diapers are a critical need for low-income families for several reasons:
- Keeping infants and toddlers dry and rash-free is not just great for the child’s health, but it allows both parents to stay on a job, rather than take time off to care for sick children.
- Child care facilities and coin-operated laundry facilities do not accept cloth diapers, and require disposable diapers.
- With a monthly supply of disposable diapers running $100 or more, families frequently struggle with the choice of diapers or food, diapers or medicine or diapers and transportation.
“What happened in this community over the past five weeks was heartwarming and genuine,” said Dan Flannery, Post-Crescent Media’s executive editor. “Not only did we receive the support of four key community partners, but 309 individual donations — from readers, businesses, foundations, churches and civic groups — accounted for more than half of the total.
“I am amazed by the Fox Cities. There’s no other way to put it. Thank you.”
The campaign began on Mother’s Day with three $5,000 matching grants — one each from the J. J. Keller Foundation, Thrivent Financial and United Way Fox Cities — setting the tone.
Individual contributions of $21,431.46 far surpassed the $15,000 in matching grants. In the final two weeks, contributions of more than $12,500 were collected by the Community Foundation, which distributes the funds.
“I continue to marvel at the generosity of this community and the willingness to help those in need,” Kelly said. “This United Way initiative is a great example of many partners coming together to distribute, store, support and repackage the diapers. This makes a real difference to the health and well-being of the over 600 babies who will receive diapers every month.”
Kimberly-Clark’s $5,000 donation topped off the campaign last week.
“Dollars for Diapers” is one of four four annual Do It! Community Challenges sponsored by Post-Crescent Media annually: “March To Goodwill,” benefitting Goodwill Industries of North Central Wisconsin; “Backpacks for Kids,” furnishing approximately 3,000 low-income Fox Valley students with new backpacks and school supplies; and “Stock the Shelves,” which raises hundreds of thousands of dollars to support more than two dozen hunger-relief organizations in the Fox Valley, and more than 90 organizations across Gannett Wisconsin Media’s 10-market footprint.