In late August 2017, Hurricane Harvey barreled through the Gulf of Mexico with its sights set on Texas. Its prolonged landfall brought sweeping devastation across the Houston Metro Area; homes destroyed, lives lost, families sent reeling from the destruction. My in-laws have called the Houston area home for many years and not too long ago, a tiny island just a stone’s throw away was my home too. Hearing of Harvey’s wrath made my heart ache for all of the families whose futures were now uncertain. Seeing photos of our beloved little island drenched in flood waters was devastating. But how could we help all the way in Wisconsin?
The thought of donating diapers never really crossed my mind, which is surprising since I’m a mother of two small children. As she explained the need in greater detail, my heart sank for all of the children with no access to even something as basic as a clean diaper.
I decided to host a little fundraiser for the Houston Diaper Bank for my birthday in hopes that some of my friends and family would for-go a gift in favor of a donation to help children affected by Hurricane Harvey instead. As I dug deeper and furthered my research, I was shocked to learn that public assistance programs didn’t help with diapers at all (in fact, they’re considered a “non-essential” item). As soon as I started to include the “why” behind the importance of donating diapers, my little fundraiser with an initial goal of $250 soon surpassed $3,000. I was blown away by the generosity and even more so, to the fact that so many people were just as surprised as I was to learn that low-income families weren’t receiving any sort of government assistance with diapers.
The inspiration, humility, and perspective gained from one act of kindness sparked a little idea to start a diaper bank of my own, which quickly grew into a big dream. After many months of hard work, careful planning, organizing, & dreaming, on October 3, 2018, we distributed our first supply of diapers, and have been working hard to continue to meet & exceed our commitments to the community ever since. I sincerely thank you for all of your support and look forward to changing lives together, one clean diaper at a time.