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Junior League of Northern Virginia Diaper Drives Help Close Gap for Mothers and Babies in Need | Community Spirit

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Junior League of Northern Virginia Diaper Drives Help Close Gap for Mothers and Babies in Need

From the Junior League of Nothern VA:

MCLEAN, Va. -- The Junior League of Northern Virginia (JLNV), a women’s volunteer organization that empowers women to be a driving force to improve the Northern Virginia community, has collected and donated more than 18,000 diapers through ongoing Northern Virginia-wide diaper drives. What began in the fall of 2010 with a goal of 10,000, has exceeded expectations of local area charities. The JLNV held the diaper drives as a participating organization in the partnership between the Association of Junior Leagues International and Huggies® Every Little Bottom campaign.   According to a new study commissioned by Kimberly Clark and Huggies®, one in three American mothers are in diaper need – they struggle to provide diapers for their babies. These mothers have had to cut back on food, utilities like heat or electricity, or child care in order to provide diapers. Other basic needs like food are covered under government-sponsored programs; however, moms and babies who need diapers fall into a coverage gap.  Additionally, cloth diapers are not an option for many of these families as they do not have their own laundry machines and coin-operated laundromats often forbid washing cloth diapers for hygienic reasons.   The JLNV diaper drives benefitted Borromeo Housing which successfully operates Elizabeth House of Arlington, a residential program for homeless adolescent mothers and their children; the Arlington-Alexandria Coalition for the Homeless (AACH),a homeless shelter in Arlington; Embry Rucker Community Shelter, a homeless shelter in Reston; the Katherine K. Hanley Family Shelter, a homeless shelter in Fairfax; the Good Shepherd Alliance, a homeless shelter in Leesburg; and the Loudoun Abused Women’s shelter in Leesburg.   “We are pleased with the outpouring of support from the JLNV members and the public and local businesses who contributed to the overwhelming success of this project,” said J.J. Newby Ketzle, JLNV President. “The number of mothers experiencing diaper need right here in Northern Virginia is increasing, and the JLNV embraces opportunities like this to both educate about a pressing community need and to make an immediate hyper-local impact. It is our hope that the community at large will continue to work with these shelters and similar organizations to help with similar diaper drives and continue the work of raising awareness about diaper need and the impact it has on children in Northern Virginia.”       “This effort was one that grew out of a realistic, though perhaps not glamorous, existing need and took on an energy of its own,” said Joy Myers, Executive Director of Borromeo Housing, Inc. “The JLNV donated nearly 3,000 diapers for us. In my five years here at Borromeo Housing, I have not been as touched, as impressed, and as overwhelmed by a volunteer effort.”   For more information about the JLNV diaper drives and how to donate unopened packages of disposable diapers, contact diapers@jlnv.org.

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