Coronavirus Preparedness for High Risk Families

by Jake's Diapers, Inc.
Coronavirus Preparedness for High Risk Families
Coronavirus Preparedness for High Risk Families
Coronavirus Preparedness for High Risk Families
Coronavirus Preparedness for High Risk Families
Coronavirus Preparedness for High Risk Families
Coronavirus Preparedness for High Risk Families
Coronavirus Preparedness for High Risk Families
Coronavirus Preparedness for High Risk Families

The first human services agency to serve Green Bay (starting in 1899!), Family Services is now a diverse organization solving complex community problems one program at a time. 

One of those programs is Parent Connection, a program that provides education opportunities to encourage, strengthen and support families. Together, Jake’s and Parent Connection are reaching families of young children in need. 

“Transitioning to parenthood can be difficult,” the organization says on its website, “which is why we’re here to help alleviate stress and provide the support you need to be there for your family.”

Now, you might assume that we’re here to talk about diapers. Afterall, this program is aimed at families of young children. While Jake’s does send diapers to Parent Connection to distribute to its families, we want to let you know: there’s more!

We also work with Parent Connection to distribute period products to moms unable to otherwise afford these necessary hygiene products. Moms unable to afford diapers for their kids will likely also struggle to afford items to care for themselves, and our holistic help can alleviate loads of stress.

“The period supplies are appreciated by many,” says Kenlin Grams of Parent Connection in Oshkosh. “One mom in our program only has supplies when we are able to bring them to her. At this time, she has no daycare for her two children, so she is unable to work. The supplies are truly appreciated! Thanks Jake’s Diapers for all that you do in our community!”

In all of 2020, we were able to help 13,340 girls and women receive the period supplies they need. This was an increased demand due to the pandemic. Thank you for supporting this important work.

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They know the weight of hardship, yet it hasn’t stopped them in their tracks.

Many who visit Kingdom Come arrive with a smile despite the change to wait in their cars during the pandemic, and miss out on that extra bit of socializing while getting basic needs items they rely on from the food pantry of Oconto County, said Belinda Chou of the pantry.

“These older folks have worked hard through their lives,” she said. “Many have not had the best breaks in life, but they are still putting one foot in front of the other and living. They are trying to make the best of what they have living as good as they can make it. They are grateful all the time. They say thank you, even when they are struggling. They have optimism and hope that things will get better. They are resilient.”

October marked Kingdom Come’s 17th month in partnership with Jake’s. The pantry generally serves between 150-175 households each month, with products estimated at $4000 to $5000 retail, and approximately 75% of the products come from Jake’s, Belinda said. The rest are purchased by Kingdom Come or donated.

The pantry receives many hygiene products because of our partnership, including diapers, period products and adult care essentials (A.C.E. incontinence products). During its October “Diaper Day,” it served 82 clients aged 60 and over, from 59 households, in need of essential support from our A.C.E. program.

“The older Kingdom Come Food Pantry clients are on fixed income, some on the bottom of the Social Security scale,” she said. “Some are veterans. They struggle to make ends meet every month. They rely on the generosity of their community members to support them at the pantry with food. They find a way to deal with adversities as they always have – stretching the dollar, penny-pinching, dealing with the here and now. Health issues get in their way. Finding money for self-care items like Poise or adult briefs is a struggle.”

Kingdom Come is the only weekly pantry operating in Oconto County. Through COVID-19, they have focused their efforts on source CARES Act food to support the local need, and have served up to 650 households per week. The pantry is 100% volunteer and grateful for the success it has had meeting community needs.

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It seems like almost overnight, our warehouse grew into a maze of products for a steadily increasing number of families in need. These products are all items we use in modern society to raise a healthy family, and experience a quality life. Jake’s is doing more than giving out products - but rather, propelling individuals to experience the type of life we all take for granted.

COVID-19 has accelerated our growth, with an unprecedented increase in basic needs support from community members.

As of July 2020, we distributed 1,121,489 products to families in need, compared to 606,964 in all of 2019. This means we've almost already doubled our impact and just barely halfway through the year. 

COVID-19 is driving a number of poverty issues, including increased homelessness. Here's what one partner said about how our support helps:

"We’ve got girls coming in off the streets who have their period that month or just got it and they’ve got nothing - being able to hand them ... clean pants, clean underwear - in a discreet way, and then provide the hygiene products, is so impactful." - Kim Juve of Pillars, one of Jake's partners

Thank you so much for supporting this project during these difficult times.


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Jake’s Diapers builds more community partnerships as COVID-19 numbers rise. Here’s a look at how we’ve helped out with Thompson Centre on Lourdes in Appleton.

With COVID-19 numbers again on the rise, we live with increased uncertainty about the future of the virus and a pending return to normal. The ongoing social distancing can and will create emotional impacts, and many organizations have recognized this need to focus on a “tripod” of wellbeing.

As an example, Thompson Centre on Lourdes is a nonprofit organization that normally acts as a social center to support the mental, physical and emotional wellbeing of older adults, mostly those age 50 and up. 

When the pandemic hit earlier this year, the organization shut its operations yet remained dedicated to supporting those three tiers of wellbeing.

“We were  just trying to make sure that people are getting their resources,” said Elizabeth, Executive Director at TcoL. “ So as I was making calls and some of my other team, they were making calls – we started hearing things like, “I need incontinence products.’”

That’s when they learned of Jake’s Diapers, and we partnered together to support these surfacing needs. 

“What a blessing (Jake’s Diapers is) to others,” Elizabeth said. “(We) were so thankful for the incontinence supplies and hand soap. It made my day – and I wanted to share their gratitude and mine – for all that you are doing for our senior population that are homebound.”

One woman who benefited from our partnership is legally blind and had recently undergone surgery; Elizabeth said the adult care essential products were a big comfort for her so she didn’t have to worry about incontinence issues.

“We want to ensure that people live with dignity, and organizations like (Jake’s Diapers) and others that we have been connecting with, make a big difference in so many people’s lives,” Elizabeth said.

TcoL recently announced reopening plans with COVID-19 precautions in place. The organization generally serves about 2,500 members with 25 or more activities each week, ranging from things like cards and cribbage, yoga and pickleball, a sewers group, choir and more.

About Our Diaper Drop PartnersThompson Centre on Lourdes is just one of our many Diaper Drop partners Jake’s Diapers features regularly to shed light on the stories of the people we serve in order to increase awareness about the impact a donation of hygiene products can have on a single individual.

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John is one of many volunteers working the front line in these challenging times. He's our lead contact at one of our community partners, and shares the following:

It is a challenge to sort, pack, and deliver fresh vegetables, fresh fruit, day old bakery, frozen seafood and meat, trail mix and snacks to 140 addresses in Oshkosh and Appleton twice a week, more than 6000 lbs weekly. The referrals keep coming in.

It is a challenge to deliver diapers by the hundreds every week. Each week we deliver more diapers than the week before. Thank you, Jake's Diapers!

The fresh produce comes through the USDA. It is excellent. For a long time supply was an issue. Not any more.

The Department of Agriculture bought up the stock of large family farms and is now trying to get the produce to those who need it most. The least we can do is make sure the produce does not go to waste. Thank you, Oshkosh Area Community Pantry for being Chaos Central in this time of need!

Knock and go delivery of food and now diapers to families is an initiative that grew out of a felt need among Oshkosh Area School District staff and teachers to reach families currently without any secure income or living paycheck to paycheck many of whom have no reliable means of transportation or organizational capacity to go to a food pantry or a school site.

We also deliver to the elderly and infirm. It is a humbling experience to deliver food to someone who is bedridden, in a wheelchair, or who has not left their public housing unit for more than three months. The sense of isolation is tremendous.

It is a humbling experience to deliver to a homeless family holed up in a hotel room waiting for affordable housing to become available. It can be a very long wait.

I have a great team of helpers. My sorters and packers are mostly of refugee background. In several cases parents are not letting their children leave the house but make an exception for helping with this project.

Many families greatly welcome the food distribution and it is an honor for them to give back and not just receive.

My sorters and packers make the Green Bay Packers look like slackers. We do work our tails off. I am working muscles I forgot I had.

My deliverymen and women interact often with those to whom they deliver. I cannot speak highly enough of their ability to connect and make new friends.

The weather has been good and it is easy to have a conversation out of doors at more than 6 feet of distance. I am not the only one who is offered beautiful smiles and baklava or some other treat when delivering.

Many are starting to go back to work. This is great.
Some of us have worked through the entire last few months.

I am happy to say that many of the teenagers of color I support are getting their first job ever. Safer at home is a luxury not everyone can afford.

But it pays to take precautions. A store that opened recently stayed open just two days. By the third day the owner had come down with COVID and ended up in the ICU.

Teenagers are going to work, getting sick, and testing positive. At which point their coworkers and family members are supposed to get tested and quarantine in the meantime. But let's be clear: this is happening on a hit-and-miss basis.

The risks are real. But in such a time as this, it is still possible to sing with Mister Rogers: "it's a wonderful day in the neighborhood."

If you are in Oshkosh or Appleton, even if you cannot help sort and pack or deliver, feel free to sing that song any Tuesday or Thursday knowing that a strong team of sixteen people are living that song by going door to door with basic necessities in a neighborhood near you.

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Organization Information

Jake's Diapers, Inc.

Location: Neenah, WI - USA
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @jakesdiapers
Project Leader:
Lyssa Schmidt
Little Chute, WI United States
$8,749 raised of $10,000 goal
161 donations
$1,251 to go
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