Supplies for Baby Buggy Fatherhood Initiative

by The Baby Buggy, Inc.
Vetted

Laurel Parker West joined the Baby Buggy team as Program Director in December 2012 and attended her first site visit on Saturday, December 15th at the Forest Hills, Queens campus of our Forestdale site.  She participated in the Stepping Up graduation ceremony for over 30 fathers from diverse backgrounds and then celebrated with the fathers and their children at a holiday lunch that included food, conversation, singing, and a visit from Santa who distributed new toys to the children.  She wanted to share her experience with you, our global giving supporters, so you can see just how important it is to provide needed supplies to the innovative Fatherhood initiative at this site in Queens, as well as to our programs across New York and in Los Angeles.

On the Saturday morning after the heart-breaking tragedy in Newton, Connecticut, the attendees at the Forestdale Fathering Initiative Stepping Up celebration all hugged their children a little tighter.  As program staff congratulated the 30 fathers on their successful completion of the intensive 12-week program (including parenting and relationship skill development, job and education counseling, and anger management courses), they reminded us all about how precious our children are and what an important role fathers have in their lives.

The fathers at the graduation come from very diverse cultural and ethnic backgrounds and arrived at the program with different challenges.  Some had been referred due to domestic violence incidents and others through the family courts.  What was so striking about watching the group, was the strength of the friendships that had been formed between men from completely different walks of life who now share a common commitment to being engaged and loving fathers. 

Near the end of the program, after both the staff and participants shared how much the Baby Buggy donations meant to them and their children, a few of the fathers spoke to the crowd  about how this program had changed their lives.  One father, Zyman, candidly shared in a thick Eastern European accent that as a recent immigrant to New York, he had come from a culture and a family that tended to view women more as property than as people.  Through this program, he shared, he not only learned to be a better father, but to be a better husband and that his wife is his equal.  A participant in the young fathers program, Dashon, also got up to speak and shared how this program has helped him to be a hands-on father to his son even though his own father had never been a part of his life—he felt empowered to break this cycle.

Hope you enjoy the photos from this graduation celebration where father and their children could truly celebrate the bonds they are building and strengthening.  We thought you would also enjoy seeing the "Daddy's Promise" pledge that is part of this program too...a promise that all parents work hard to uphold.  Thank you so much for your ongoing support of our fatherhood programs!

Links:


Attachments:

Baby Buggy has now provided over 100,000 items to families in need through our network of Fatherhood Programs in New York City and Los Angeles; this includes a donation that went out today to Fathers First, a fatherhood program located in the Rockaways, as their center was damaged by the hurricane and many of their families have been displaced by the hurricane and have lost their homes due to a fire related to the hurricane.  These families have lost everything and Baby Buggy is working very hard to provide them with the essentials they need during this challenging time - everything ranging from warm coats, clothing and blankets to formula, baby food and water.  They are going to need donations for months to come as they work to rebuild their lives and homes.

The fathers in these families are enrolled in reputable, impactful fatherhood programs that give them the knowledge and skills necessary for fatherhood, while offering them support, guidance and encouragement along the way so they can be involved in their children's lives.  These programs also offer educational workshops focusing on parenting skills, conflict resolution, and financial education, as well as many other topics to help give fathers the skills necessary to build a stable life for their families.

The team from the Children's Institute's Fatherhood Program in LA provided the following anecdote and case story to demonstrate the impact of Baby Buggy donations in the lives of their client families:

Our Fatherhood program overall has been significantly impacted by this partnership with Baby Buggy.  We have seen an increase in father’s attendance and participation in the groups resulting from increased visitation from their
children’s primary caregivers (either the mother or grandmother).  It has instilled a sense of pride in so many of these fathers that we have not seen before.  They feel like they are contributing in a meaningful way to their child and to their families that they so desperately want to be a part of.  For that, we are forever grateful for this partnership and your continuing support.  As you know, it is so important to have fathers play an active an meaningful role in their children’s lives – these children have better attendance at school, better grades and significantly less gang
involvement.  Thank you!  You are impacting hundreds and thousands of children and their families.  I think our hope is that one day we’ll both be put out of business… : ) Until then, we are so thankful for your dedication and generosity!  THANK YOU BABY BUGGY!!!

----------------------

Hector is a single parent to 14 month old baby Cierra.  His wife left him and moved back to Guatamala to be with her family when Cierra was just 3 months old.  Hector has been an inspiration to the other fathers in our Fatherhood group here at Otis Booth.  He participates in every group session and is always cheery and upbeat.  He works as many jobs as he can – he has four steady jobs but he picks up other small odd jobs when possible so he can provide for Cierra.  He wants to provide the absolute best he can for Cierra so he has been able to rent a small one room apartment for the two of them.  Our partnership with Baby Buggy has been amazing for this family.  Hector works as hard as he can to provide for Cierra.  The Delta pack'n'play donatd by Baby Buggy has been amazing – he was overwhelmed with tears of joy when he was able to move Cierra into a proper bed.  They had previously been sharing a mattress on the ground.  As Cierra has become more mobile, Hector has noted a need to have her in a safe space while he is getting ready for work.  He has always wanted her to have a space of her own to sleep in.  Hector recently was able to receive a Bugaboo stroller from Baby Buggy as well so he no longer has to carry Cierra everywhere.  Cierra just LOVES it too!  He really feels like someone believes in him – believes in their little family and that goes such a long way – thank you Baby Buggy, Delta and Bugaboo!

Warmest
Regards,

Your friends at CII

Client Family Guests at the Bedtime Bash
Client Family Guests at the Bedtime Bash

Baby Buggy has donated a total of 89,127 critical baby items and gear through our Fatherhood programs – these donations include strollers, car seats, highchairs, breast pumps, baby food, diapers, bottles and books, as well as many other baby supplies.  Evidence suggests that men who are under financial strain or who have unstable employment have more challenges with being responsible fathers.  In order to help ease financial burdens, Baby Buggy provides donations of baby items and gear to help fathers enrolled in Fatherhood programs become more involved in their children’s lives; they are more likely to ‘show up’ if they are able to go to their child’s mother’s doorstep with these crucial items in hand, knowing that they have something to contribute.  This also makes the mother more likely to allow them to be a part of their child’s life.  

These programs help equip fathers with the knowledge and skills needed for fatherhood – helping fathers feel
empowered to embrace fatherhood and the responsibilities that accompany it by addressing issues such as relationship building, positive parenting and discipline strategies, improving the relationship with their child’s mother, career development and financial education, and helping a father establish his role within the family.  

In June, Baby Buggy honored the strong commitment these fathers have demonstrated to being responsible fathers by inviting over 100 clients and their families to attend Baby Buggy’s Annual Bedtime Bash at Victorian Gardens in Central Park, just a few weeks before Father’s Day.  The families enjoyed delicious food, fun rides, face painting, as well as many other activities and received Simon and Schuster children’s books with daddy themes.   One of the programs that participated, Forestdale’s Fathering Initiative shared the following about their families that attended the event:

We are so grateful for the opportunity to be part of Baby Buggy’s Annual Bedtime Bash. It was a rare treat for Forestdale’s families to enjoy this delightful corner of Central Park in the company of family and new friends. The families who came to the Bash have all been involved in the Fathering Initiative, a Forestdale program that seeks to strengthen the role of fathers in their families.

Our group included many families with babies, children and teens. You may have seen Edwin and his fiancée Alana— Edwin has four children from a previous relationship and he and Alana have been very dedicated to making their new blended family work. They loved the opportunity to enjoy a festive evening out with the four little ones. AJ and Sarah also made the trek from Far Rockaway to be at the Bedtime Bash, bringing their three young children, Akira, Tayshaun and Denelle. AJ was previously enrolled in the Fathering Initiative program for younger fathers,
and is now a counselor in the program. He and Sarah have overcome very difficult circumstances, including childhoods spent in homeless shelters and foster care, to build a strong, loving family for their children. It meant so
much to them to be invited and celebrated as a family at the Bash.

These and other families expressed their gratitude for the opportunity to bond with their children and enjoy the free
rides, refreshments and goodies.

Baby Buggy is looking forward to continuing to support these innovative and impactful programs!

Baby Buggy Bedtime Bash - Client Family Guests
Baby Buggy Bedtime Bash - Client Family Guests
Enjoying a Plum Organics snack!
Enjoying a Plum Organics snack!

Baby Buggy has donated over 80,300 items to the five fatherhood programs we support in the Bronx, Queens and Los Angeles!  In the last three months alone, Baby Buggy has donated over 5,026 diapers, 26, 660 organic baby and toddler food items, 1,660 clothing items, 365 books, 86 safe sleeping spaces, 80 packs of wipes, 35 high
chairs, among many other essential baby items to our fatherhood programs.  These donations provide our client families with the tools they need to keep their children healthy and safe, while improving their overall well-being.

In March, Baby Buggy partnered with KIND for the ‘Do the KIND Thing’ initiative in LA and NYC.  In an effort to address the needs of struggling families, Tiffani Thiessen and Elisabeth Rohm called on people everywhere to
carry out one act of kindness by lending a helping hand to a parent, which could mean holding a door for a mom or dad with a stroller or babysitting free of charge. Tiffani and Elisabeth paid these kind acts forward in support of Baby
Buggy and delivered over 3,850 diapers and wipes to families in need enrolled in the fathering program at the Children’s Institute in LA and over 2,000 diapers and wipes  to families at Little Sisters of the Assumption in NYC.  These diaper donations help address a continuous, non-negotiable need – just like food - for our client families with young children.  It takes someone two hours of work at minimum wage to purchase a pack of diapers and overnment assistance programs do not provide or cover diapers.  As a result, 79% of moms in diaper need have had to cut back on other essentials like food and utilities in order to cover the cost of diapers; some are even forced to clean
out and reuse diapers as they do not have any alternatives.  Many child care facilities require a supply of diapers in order for children to be placed in their facility; if parents are not able to provide a supply of diapers, they cannot place their children in child care impacting their employment.

Baby Buggy received the following case story from the Children’s Institute about one of the client families we provided with a donation recently:

Ivan Solares has 15 month old twins – a little boy and girl.  Through the generosity of Baby Buggy and their product donors Delta and Dorel, CII was able to provide Ivan with a pack and play for each child and a high chair.  Ivan has been attending our Fatherhood support groups for the past year and is just elated that he now has his children full-time.  This transition happened quickly and a bit unexpectedly as the mother was just recently incarcerated. 

Needless to say, Ivan was ill prepared to take care of two small children and he didn’t have any baby items in his apartment.  While Ivan is employed full-time it wouldn’t have been possible for him to purchase these items on his own (he currently lives on just over $12,000 per year). 

It means so much for Ivan to be able to provide a place to sleep and eat for his little ones. His goal is to bring these babies up in a better environment than he was brought up in.  He was raised in the projects and surrounded by gang activity from a very small age.  Ivan just wants to provide the very best that he can for his babies and this is a great start for him!  Thank you so much for your help!

Fun Times with Healthy Snacks!
Fun Times with Healthy Snacks!

Baby Buggy is committed to supporting innovative fathering programs that help fathers feel empowered to embrace and establish their role as a father and accept the responsibilities that accompany it; these programs offer services including individual counseling, educational father support groups, child support assistance, educational support and career development.  Baby Buggy has now distributed over 61,150 critical baby items, including cribs, strollers, high chairs, books, toys, and many other essential items through our new fatherhood initiative!

Evidence suggests that men who are under financial strain or who have unstable employment have more difficulty being responsible fathers.  In order to help ease financial burdens, Baby Buggy provides fathers participating in Baby Buggy's network fathering programs with donations of clothing, gear and baby supplies that they need to keep their children safe and healthy.  These donations often help the fathers have access to their children since they are
able to contribute to their children's physical well-being, which gives them the opportunity to be actively involved in their children's lives.

Thanks to the generosity of Bloomberg, Hasbro, Simon & Schuster, as well as other donors, Baby Buggy was able to provide many of the fathers with holiday gift bags, as well as donations of toys, books and accessories to be given to their children as holiday gifts.  These families do not have the means to buy holiday gifts for their families, let alone many of the essential baby items Baby Buggy has provided them with.  The families were very touched by Baby Buggy's efforts to bring warmth and cheer to their family during the holiday season.

 

About Project Reports

Project Reports on GlobalGiving are posted directly to globalgiving.org by Project Leaders as they are completed, generally every 3-4 months. To protect the integrity of these documents, GlobalGiving does not alter them; therefore you may find some language or formatting issues.

If you donate to this project or have donated to this project, you will get an e-mail when this project posts a report. You can also subscribe for reports via e-mail without donating or by subscribing to this project's RSS feed.

Get Reports via Email

We'll only email you new reports and updates about this project.

Organization Information

The Baby Buggy, Inc.

Location: New York, New York - USA
Website: http:/​/​www.babybuggy.org
Project Leader:
Laurel West
Program Director
New York, New York United States
$8,660 raised of $10,000 goal
 
161 donations
$1,340 to go
Donate Now
Donating through GlobalGiving is safe, secure, and easy with many payment options to choose from. Learn more.
Add Project to Favorites

Help raise money for this important cause by creating a personalized fundraising page for this project.

Start a Fundraiser

Learn more about GlobalGiving

Teenage Science Students
Vetting +
Due Diligence

Snorkeler
Our
Impact

Woman Holding a Gift Card
Give
Gift Cards

Young Girl with a Bicycle
GlobalGiving
Guarantee

Find out what happens next. Sign up for email updates from GlobalGiving and this project.