LAKELAND, Fla. – A group of motorcycle riders rumbled onto the Lakeland campus of the Florida Baptist Children’s Homes early one Saturday morning as they escorted a pickup truck piled high with boxes of diapers.
This group of F.A.I.T.H. Riders from First Baptist Church Palmetto unloaded more than 10,000 diapers for the Children’s Homes’ diaper drive, which was conducted from September 26 to November 4.
Steve Johnston, acting president for the Children’s Homes reported that they collected more than 240,000 diapers, which were provided by numerous churches, organizations, and individuals.
“We are extremely happy with the results of the diaper drive. We were really blessed by the generosity of so many people,” Johnston said.
Johnston said that the diapers will help defray significant childcare costs for their foster parents in Florida and for the Children’s Malnutrition Center in Guatemala. He said that nearly 30,000 diapers a month are needed for their domestic and international childcare needs.
The Children’s Homes reported that groups providing more than 10,000 diapers included First Baptist Church at the Mall (Lakeland), Lafayette Baptist Association, and First Baptist Church of Palmetto. In addition, they reported that significant monetary contributions for diapers were made by Mayo Baptist Church, First Baptist Church Arcadia, and Cowboy Church Ministries (La Belle).
Charlie Cox, vice president of programs for the Children’s Homes said that their many foster families across Florida that care for infants and young children will benefit greatly from the gift of diapers.
“Many of our foster parents don’t have a lot of personal resources, so these diapers will really be a big help to them financially. In addition, this large donation of diapers is very encouraging because it shows that so many people truly care and appreciate the work that foster parents are doing to help care for disadvantaged children,” Cox said.
Howard Hooper, regional director with One More Child, the Children’s Homes’ international childcare ministry, reported that they started delivering the first of the diapers to the Children’s Malnutrition Center last week during one of their mission trips.
“We arrived at the center last week with our extra suitcases in tow filled with diapers. Over the next couple of months each mission team member will be carrying an extra suitcase filled with diapers,” Hooper said.
“We have over 40 children at the center in diapers. So, you can imagine the number of diapers we go through each day. Having all of these donated diapers are such a blessing and will save the center thousands of dollars.
“When we first began our mission work at the center only cloth diapers were being used. It was almost impossible to keep up with clean diapers each day. Having a large supply of disposable diapers actually frees up time for staff allowing them to serve even more children.”
You can learn more about mission trips to the Children’s Malnutrition Center in Guatemala on the One More Child website at www.OneMoreChild.org.