Meijer donates $10,000 to the Great Start Parent Coalition’s Diaper Drive matching their donation of the same amount from the previous year

Renewed partnership has significant impact on the community.

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich., 2015-2-19 — /EPR Retail News/ — Meijer recently announced a $10,000 contribution to the Great Start Parent Coalition’s Diaper Drive, matching their donation of the same amount from the previous year and furthering the partnership between the two organizations. The Grand Rapids, Mich.-based retailer’s previous donation allowed the Coalition to purchase more than 60,000 diapers for families in need in Kent County, an impact felt by thousands throughout the community who struggle to keep their babies clean, dry, and healthy. The Parent Coalition is excited to be able to facilitate this process again.

The Great Start Parent Coalition, a group of parents and caregivers for young children, works to support the voices of children in the community, preparing them for success in school and life. The ongoing Diaper Drive is an integral part of this work. With one in four babies in Kent County born into poverty, many families are unable to afford dry diapers, resulting in numerous physical and emotional consequences for the children and their parents. Five years ago, the Parent Coalition started the Diaper Drive as a way for parents to help other parents. Since then, they have helped provide nearly 500,000 diapers to over 19 agencies that distribute diapers to families throughout Kent County.

The invaluable partnership between Meijer and the Parent Coalition has deeply strengthened the impact of the Diaper Drive throughout the community. Thanks to their most recent donation, many diapers have already been purchased and were delivered just in time for the 2014 holiday season. The Parent Coalition spent the first third of the $10,000 in December 2014 and was able to provide over 20,000 diapers to various diaper banks in the community including Alpha Women’s Center of Grand Rapids, Alpha Women’s Center of Lowell, Diaper Depot, God’s Kitchen, HELP Pregnancy Crisis Aid, North Kent Community Services, South Grandville Christian Reformed Church, and Streams of Hope.

This effort has been met with much excitement and gratitude, as individuals and organizations from all corners of the county feel the impact.

“The single moms and families that seek services at the Pregnancy Resource Center are so grateful for the diapers made available through this grant. The PRC would not be able to meet the community need without the support of Meijer and Great Start,” said Deb Bierens, family support services manager at the Pregnancy Resource Center in Grand Rapids.

Alpha Women’s Center of Lowell Executive Director Christa Wetzel reflected a similar sentiment: “I cannot express words to show the depth of the gratitude that the Alpha Women’s Center of Lowell feels towards Meijer’s donation of diapers to our center. Diapers are such a burden for our families and it is such a privilege to help assist them with this need. It is donations like this that make it possible for us to assist the families in our community.”

The retailer’s generosity is felt throughout the Grand Rapids area, and the Great Start Parent Coalition is one of many who wish to express their gratitude. Only through partnerships with community organizations, churches, individuals, and businesses like Meijer who are invested in the community and committed to the health and happiness of all of its citizens is the Diaper Drive able to reach so many babies and families throughout the county.

While the Diaper Drive has seen much success over the last five years, there is still much work to be done, as families’ inability to afford clean diapers remains a critical issue. Please visit www.diaperdrivekent.org for ideas on how an individual or organization may become involved in the Diaper Drive efforts, through diaper donations and collections, monetary gifts, or even raising awareness. Together, we can combat the diaper gap in our community, helping families in need keep their babies clean, dry, and healthy – an early and integral step in creating equal opportunities for success for every child in Kent County.

About the Great Start Parent Coalition of Kent County
A partner to the Great Start Collaborative and First Steps of Kent County, the Great Start Parent Coalition is a group of parents and caregivers dedicated to informing, shaping, and supporting the early childhood work in their community. The Coalition provides training in leadership and advocacy skills to build public support for early childhood investment and a stronger voice for the children in their community, preparing them for success in school and life.  The Diaper Drive is the Parent Coalition’s ongoing effort to collect and distribute diapers to families in need in Kent County.  More information on the Great Start Parent Coalition and their Diaper Drive can be found online at www.GreatStartKent.org, and on Facebook (facebook.com/GreatStartKent) and Twitter (@GreatStartKent).

Contact: Christina Fecher, 616-735-7968, christina.fecher@meijer.com