REGION – Every couple of months something magical happens in Vermont that most people are not aware of. The Vermont Diaper Bank Program shows up at The Family Place in Norwich with a U-Haul full of disposable diapers for the communities in the southern region. Representatives from about 60 organizations including food pantries, nonprofits, doctor’s offices, and childcare centers show up at the drop-site and form an assembly line to unload the diapers and wipes from the truck, hand them down the line to the designated recipients who fill their cars with thousands of diapers and head off down the road to their facilities.
Kayla Bapp, one of the Springfield Area Parent Child Center’s (SAPCC) PCC specialists, makes this trip to stand in line to receive SAPCC’s allocation. During the last drop, Kayla managed to cram 4,000 diapers and wipes into her small Kia sedan. With the Kia packed to the limit, she then drove to SAPCC’s North Springfield Campus and unloaded diapers, size zero to six, to give out free to families of the Center’s southern Windsor and northern Windham county service area.
Times are hard, costs are sky high, and providing this service to the community helps take a little bit of pressure off of these struggling families. They can receive a package of diapers and wipes once per week for as long as the supply lasts and they are passionately grateful. This service has made a difference in their lives. These are a couple of quotes from families who have benefited from the diaper bank program:
“The program for diapers has been a Godsend for us as CCO’s of my granddaughter. There are so many expenses that are not reimbursed and diapers help tremendously.” And, “The diapers are very helpful, especially when I couldn’t afford to pay the bills and buy diapers at the same time.”
Although Northern Vermont is serviced in a similar fashion with a drop-site in Burlington, it’s the camaraderie that has evolved in Norwich that is special. The assembly line process developed one day when the two individuals who typically unload the truck didn’t show up. From that day forward, this group of unsung heroes, connected only by the services they provide, formed a line to unload the U-Haul and load thousands of diapers and wipes into their vehicles. The families served by the Diaper Bank may not be aware of how all this unfolds, but they are keenly aware of how fortunate they are to get this free service.”