Newark families are “adopting” moms and dads in need, ensuring they have diapers, formula and baby wipes through a new program facilitated by United Way of Greater Newark. Donors can either send one-time donations or opt to “adopt,” committing monthly contributions to families struggling financially during the coronavirus pandemic.
The Parent Exchange Program was organized with the help of parent advocacy group Project Ready as well as parent networks The Mommy Grind and Newark Mommies. Together, they’ve already served 41 families and raised $16,000 for the cause.https://6ccba148632f09b112c3501e28c56363.safeframe.googlesyndication.com/safeframe/1-0-38/html/container.html
There are 40 new families who have filled out the program’s form, requesting donations. When UGWN receives financial donations, all money goes directly towards the purchase of supplies, organizers said.
The program came together when UWGN President Catherine Wilson started speaking with colleagues and identified the need among families in the community for essential items.
“That’s basically how good programming works,” Wilson told NJ Advance Media. “You need your partners in the community and United Way is one of those organizations that is famous for convening partners and figuring out who can do what.”
Wilson’s philosophy on child welfare relates to the wellbeing of “the whole child” and “the whole family.” To curb child abuse and protect a child’s wellbeing, she describes the need for a holistic approach that provides not only a proper education and a healthy home, but food security and access to items like diapers.
Wilson began her career in the Newark child welfare system, working for the Division of Youth and Family Services and the Essex County Court Appointed Special Advocates.