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Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Three Single Dudes and a Diaper Drive

105_2295Years ago, two of my friends – Bob and John – and I stopped giving each other Christmas presents. Instead, we pool the money we would have spent on gifts for each other and we pick up items for a local homeless shelter.

A couple of years ago, we picked up diapers for the shelter's diaper drive. Last year, with the help of a bunch of other people, we were able to buy 15 turkeys and quite a few non-perishable items for the shelter. This year, the shelter sent out an email saying they had an urgent need for larger sized diapers, so that made our decision for us.

We were more experienced this time. Two years ago, a woman saw us struggling to figure out the numbering system on the diaper packaging and she came to our rescue, explaining how it works. That knowledge came in handy. We knew to buy diapers with larger numbers on them since the shelter needed larger sized diapers. But we also picked up a few packages for smaller babies too.

John (left) and Bob (right) pose with the cart full of diapers

Me (left) and Bob (right) pose with the diapers
Two other people donated some money for the cause and we ended up spending $108.00 for 596 diapers. That prompted me to do some math in my head. If the average baby goes through 10 diapers per day – and that's what several websites say – then our 596 diapers would be enough to get two babies through a month or so, or eight babies through one week. Not staggering numbers, but collectively, it all adds up.

Loading the diapers into Bob's vehicle

We dropped the diapers off in a craft store parking lot, where a local radio station that was sponsoring the drive had a small semi-truck waiting to take all the diapers to the shelter. We were met there by an on-air radio personality and several other people who work at the station. We stopped for a couple of photos and then they asked us to go on the air for a minute, which we did.

Lee John Bob
Me, John and Bob

A view of the 300,000 diapers in the truck

As we chatted with one of the radio station workers, he told us they collected about 300,000 diapers so far. You can see from the truck above, they still had plenty of room for more. A slow, steady stream of people dropped off diapers while we were there. There was one more day remaining in the diaper drive and I'm hoping they were able to fill the truck completely. A full truck of diapers for families in need won't solve all the problems in the world, or even in the city, but it'll make a difference. And that means something.


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