Circle of Change

by Jake's Network of Hope
Circle of Change
Circle of Change
Circle of Change
Circle of Change

Oshkosh recorded its highest number of homeless in February 2022, according to the Oshkosh Kids Foundation (OKF). This problem is dramatically affecting families and area youth: in the Oshkosh School System, the poverty rate among enrolled families is 43%.


To address the problem of safe, affordable housing, the OKF has teamed up with 17 local community partners to introduce the Tiny House Village - Jake’s Network of Hope is thrilled to be one of these community partners!


The Tiny House Village will provide affordable, short-term housing for families while they learn life, financial, and home management skills. This program is to provide these families with stable and safe housing and prevent homelessness. Through our partnership, Jake’s will provide essential hygiene products as well as furnish the homes for each new family. 


The Oshkosh Kids Foundation provides a simple needs assessment so that struggling children and families find the emergency help they need, and navigate the wide stream of compassion in Oshkosh. The housing program, combined with services and education, will help these families learn skills in a community environment while they learn how to thrive in a rental or purchase a home.


In 2021, the OKF housed 41 families and 92 kids with motel stays, rent assistance, or security deposits. COVID increased the homelessness problem in Oshkosh, and OKF began helping 127 families with 378 kids. That is a total of 1,111 nights provided in motels at the cost of $55,111.33. 


For those families in rentals receiving rent assistance, OKF provided 40+ mattresses, beds & bedding, food, gas cards, hygiene products, clothes, lice kits, household items, and paid for fees. But this trend is unsustainable, which is why the tiny house village is vital to the area.


Jake’s is proud to be partnered with the Oshkosh Kids Foundation to provide bedding, small kitchen appliances, dishware, and other household items. These items will be furnished for each tiny home, and when a family leaves they get to keep the items to provide families with a great headstart in their next chapter. We are excited to see the positive impact of the Tiny House Village on the community! 


Share on Twitter Share on Facebook
Cloth Cares for Kids in Kyiv
Cloth Cares for Kids in Kyiv

Cloth diapers are offering a layer of comfort for a pair of sisters and their young children, separated from their husbands and dads as the conflict in Ukraine continues. 

Claudia Pardo is hosting the Ukrainian refugees in her Switzerland home. Some Ukranians working at the United Nations created a nonprofit to connect hosts and refugees, and when she found out she applied. 

“They are from Kyiv. They left when the bomb/war started,” Claudia wrote. “The dads wanted them to be safe.  They left and spent days/weeks moving around in Europe (Poland, Romania, Bulgaria). Once I confirmed I could host them, they came here.”

The group includes the two sisters and their 3 children, all ages 2 and younger. Their husbands and parents are still in Kyiv, as men ages 18 to 60 years old are not allowed to leave Ukraine unless they have more than 4 children or have disabilities, Claudio explained.  

“They feel grateful to be here and safe, but guilty they can have peace while the rest of their family/friends are under conflict,” Claudio said, adding that the uncertainty of the conflict takes its toll, too. “The moms are always very anxious until they can have the daily call with family at home to make sure they are still alive/good.”

Claudia reached out for cloth kits from Jake’s to ease the financial burden of diapers on the group. There was a transition getting used to the new material and cloth process, but Claudia said it has already made a difference. 

“They still don’t feel comfortable wearing cloth when they go out, but are getting there bit by bit!  So far, it’s been really helpful given the high costs of diapers!” she wrote. 

As the conflict continues, its unclear how long these refugees will need to continue sheltering in Claudia’s home. She said they use Google translate to overcome language barriers, and have adjusted to the extra activity that an additional 5 people brings to one home.

“It's really difficult for them to go from having completely independent lives to feel like a burden.  The amount of times they don't want to interfere and be discreet is amazing.  One of the moms shares a queen bed with the 2 year old and the girl falls off the bed multiple times in the week (although I added a bed rail) so when I suggested to add a mattress on the floor or a toddler bed for her, she said ‘I rather be awoken by the cries of my child because she fell off the bed than because we are being bombed.”


Share on Twitter Share on Facebook

As Jake’s continues to grow, we want to shed light on the diversity of the impact we make. Our partners include 501c3, school-based and faith-based groups that serve a diverse set of community needs, from foster care to afterschool programs, family needs and domestic abuse shelters, refugee work, poverty support, cancer patient programs and more. 

These collaborations mean partners can re-allocate time and money to instead focusing on their programs, while meeting human needs in the community. 

Today we are highlighting our partnership with Lakeshore Foster Families,  a Manitowoc County based, all-volunteer 501c3 that supports “foster and kinship children and the families who care for them by raising awareness and providing resources and support,” according to its website. In 2021, the program served 55 foster families and 170 children in foster homes.

Among the items foster families require are often, of course, diapers as well as feminine hygiene products. Lakeshore Foster Families and Friends receive diapers, pullups, wipes, and feminine hygiene products from Jake's. 

“Without this service, we would only help supply these items one time to new placements,” said Board President Molly Stolp. “This has had a huge impact on our families. In 2021, through this program, we were able to supply 706 packages of diapers, pullups, or feminine hygiene products. We are grateful.”

Foster families echoed the help our partnership provides. Here’s just a few words from foster families in the program: 

"We foster two children and this has helped offset monthly expenses. It makes fostering less burdensome financially.”

"It is one less thing that I have to worry about buying every month and every little bit helps.’

"Being able to give our foster kids the same love and support as our biological children.”


Share on Twitter Share on Facebook

When the pandemic began in 2020 and hygiene supplies were exceptionally limited, the Waushara County Dept. of Human Services identified a need to provide curbside pick up of essential infant care items along with food and other resources it mobilized to offer community members.

“Waushara County is a rural community in Central Wisconsin. There are no ‘big box’ discount stores available for the affordable purchase of infant diapers/wipes,” said Jan Novak, Waushara County Dept. Human Services. “Transportation creates a barrier for many of our local residents who would need to travel more than 50 miles to make these purchases.”

Jake’s and the Waushara County Health Department teamed up to open The Waushara County Diaper Pantry in April 2020. Since that time, there have been over 725 pantry visits and a total of  60,800 diapers have been distributed to families in need.

“Parents who receive this assistance are extremely thankful. It helps them manage household expenses and provide necessary supplies to appropriately care for their infant/toddler diapering needs.”

Share on Twitter Share on Facebook

As Jake’s continues to expand its reach in the community, we’re excited by the network of partners coming out of the woodwork - and all the great work we can do together.

Our partners are 501c3 nonprofits, faith-based or school-based organizations serving individuals in need because of a variety of circumstances, from financial struggles to foster care, cancer patients and more.

“Jake’s is a wonderful opportunity to expand the impact we make because it’s one-stop shopping at 20% of retail or even less,” said Deb, of Our Saviors Lutheran Church, and an active community partner. “We’ve actually encouraged our people to give money instead, because we’ve got people who will do shopping (for donated goods). There’s just so many opportunities.”

Over the holiday break, when Oshkosh School District Food service was closed, their program fed children at several locations within the district and during the last they distributed shoes, underwear, socks and hygiene products from Jakes. 

“What fun it was to see the children so thrilled to receive such beautiful, NEW items,” Deb said. 

Other examples of Oshkosh area churches that partnered to serve the community include: 

  • First Presbyterian Church in Oshkosh:  Stocked personal care items, hygiene items, mittens, hats, socks all purchased from Jake’s.
  • St. Andrews Lutheran - Oshkosh: Hosted a children’s fair to give out toys, provided books to literacy groups.
  • First English Lutheran - Oshkosh: Sourced items such as coats, books - feed hungry kids in the summer and we did a toy give away - we had the games that we gave. 

“Thank you for what you do,”  said Patricia of First Presbyterian Church, “so we can do what we do.”


Share on Twitter Share on Facebook

About Project Reports

Project reports on GlobalGiving are posted directly to 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 can recieve an email when this project posts a report. You can also subscribe for reports without donating.

Sign up for updates

Organization Information

Jake's Network of Hope

Location: Neenah, WI - USA
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @jakesdiapers
Project Leader:
Scott Sawinski
Neenah , WI United States

Funded Project!

Combined with other sources of funding, this project raised enough money to fund the outlined activities and is no longer accepting donations.

Still want to help?

Support another project run by Jake's Network of Hope that needs your help, such as:

Find a Project

Learn more about GlobalGiving

Teenage Science Students
Vetting +
Due Diligence


Woman Holding a Gift Card
Gift Cards

Young Girl with a Bicycle

Get incredible stories, promotions, and matching offers in your inbox

WARNING: Javascript is currently disabled or is not available in your browser. GlobalGiving makes extensive use of Javascript and will not function properly with Javascript disabled. Please enable Javascript and refresh this page.