Baby Basics of Sarasota County Provides Diapers, Wipes and Kindness

The Giving Coast

Pictured: Original organizers and board members of Baby Basics of Sarasota County, Inc.,

The volunteers of Baby Basics of Sarasota County, Inc., an all volunteer, nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization that provides diapers, wipes and books to working, low-income families who do not receive any governmental assistance, are feeling very grateful these days.

According to Vice President Barbara Price, “The local support we have received recently from volunteers, church groups and philanthropic foundations has been beyond our expectations. The donations have been very generous and the matches that will come in from the Community Foundation of Sarasota County's 2022 Giving Challenge, strengthened by The Patterson Foundation will make a huge difference to the families we serve. We live in an extremely charitable community!”

The first Baby Basics was founded in Ridgewood, N.J. in 1992. There are 11 additional Baby Basics affiliates across the United States. All the programs are run by volunteers and are supported by corporate and private donations. The Sarasota County program was founded in 2007. They currently serve 70 at their Sarasota distribution center and another 31 at the Venice center. As a partner with the Sarasota Library Association's Born to Read Program, the group is also committed to literacy. Along with the basics, they distribute donated books for babies, older siblings and caregivers. “We like to give diapers, wipes, books and kindness,” says Price.

A good amount of the Baby Basics funding comes from an annual fashion show, scheduled to take place in October 2022 at the Sarasota Yacht Club. Because of the global pandemic, they were not able to hold this fundraiser for the past couple of years and so donations and matches from Sarasota County’s 2022 Giving Challenge were even more important. The families served by Baby Basics come to the organization through referrals. Once a referral is made, Baby Basics volunteers meet with the family every month until the baby turns three or becomes potty trained in order to enhance the health and safety of the child and reduce the families' financial burden and the stress that accompanies it.

"During the height of the pandemic when we were not able to meet indoors, we held outdoor distributions,” says Price. “We never missed one and that’s something we are very proud of.”

Currently, there is a diaper, wipe and feeding crisis occurring throughout the United States. Offers to volunteer or donate are needed more now than ever. “We always welcome volunteers,” says Price. “Join us!” Visit the Baby Basics website to learn how you can help: https://www.babybasicssarasota.org/get-involved.

Pictured: Original organizers and board members of Baby Basics of Sarasota County, Inc.,

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