United Way Emerging Leaders host diaper drive in La Crosse

Local News

LA CROSSE, Wis. (WLAX/WEUX) – The COVID-19 pandemic has meant a higher demand for baby care products like diapers. First News at Nine’s David LaClair talks to some who look to help combat that need.

Nell Saunders-Scott, Parenting Place Fund Development Director said, “Diaper need is something not covered by other assistance programs, such as if a family’s getting food from a food bank.”

Nell Saunders-Scott with the parenting place of La Crosse knows diapers are a great need for families.

“In 2019, we served a little over 200 families and gave out about 44,000 diapers. In 2020, 450 families received about 400,000 diapers,” said Saunders-Scott.

That need inspired young adult volunteers with great rivers united way’s emerging leaders group to aid and start a diaper drive.

Mariah Welke, Great Rivers United Way Emerging Leaders Chair said, “We know that 1 in 3 families struggle to afford diapers, and diapers can actually cost up to $100 a month per child. It was actually an idea from one of our other group members, and she had heard about some other people that recently did a diaper drive for the parenting place and thought that would be a great thing for us to do as well.”

“The parenting place has been a partner with great rivers united way for years, and we’re really lucky to know they are familiar with our programs,” said Saunders-Scott.

The diaper drive kicked off Monday and runs through March 19 at several La Crosse area businesses.

Saunders-Scott said, “About half the diapers we gave out last year were diaper donations that were given to us through drives or people giving us leftover diapers their kids have grown out of, or just picking up an extra box at the groceries.”

Although some boxes remain empty, Welke says she looks forward to things picking up.

“I hope it continues to grow as we get more promotion out, we’re promoting on our Facebook and Instagram pages,” said Welke.

In the end, both say any and all donations will make a big difference for families.

In La Crosse, David LaClair. First News at Nine.

The diaper drive welcomes all sizes of diapers and wipes, but they especially ask for diaper sizes 4, 5 and 6. A full list of drop-off sites can be found on the Great Rivers United Way Emerging Leaders Facebook page.

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