Faces of Success: Lisa Jones
A recent report from the U.S. government estimates that it costs $242,000 for parents to raise a child from birth until age 18. That amount applies to middle-income parents and doesn’t factor in the cost of college tuition. This statistic would overwhelm most parents.
“There’s a sense of relief when we are able to help address the needs of our new parents,” said Pearl-Cohn United Way Family Resource Center Director Michael Copeland.
The Pearl-Cohn United Way Family Resource Center offers a closet stocked full of essential baby supplies and additional resources — like parenting classes — to help new families provide a healthy start for their babies.
“Our parents have so many needs and barriers to overcome. The parenting classes and supply donations from our community partnerships help us break some of them down,” said Copeland.
Events like Titan Up for Tots Baby Shower Days of Action are critical to meeting the needs of new parents in the Pearl-Cohn community. Titan Up for Tots Baby Shower Days of Action is a partnership between the Tennessee Titans and United Way of Metropolitan Nashville that allows United Way corporate partners and volunteers to donate and sort essential baby supplies for Nashville’s at-risk mothers. Last year, Titans players, cheerleaders and staff packed 1,500 bags filled with items like diapers, wipes, onesies and blankets for Nashville mothers and their babies. Bags from this year’s event will be distributed at United Way Family Resource Centers.
“This powerful partnership between the Tennessee Titans and United Way of Metropolitan Nashville helps create solutions to health barriers for hundreds of Nashville’s most vulnerable mothers and their babies,” said United Way of Metropolitan Nashville Interim CEO Mary Jo Wiggins. “These solutions establish a foundation for healthy lifestyles and reduce the risk of future health problems for children in this community.”
“The outpouring of generosity means more than you can imagine; it helps me do my job,” said Copeland. “We run low on supplies; there are still needs every summer, and we are able to address some of them, thanks to Titan Up for Tots.”
Research indicates that a healthy start leads to fewer health problems in children later in life. Copeland stresses the importance of good health, including proper hygiene, to all new parents.
“Sometimes you hear stories about babies wearing the same diapers because their parents can’t afford to purchase new ones.”
Mothers like Lisa Jones* who rely on the supplies and services provided by the Family Resource Center are extremely appreciative of the support they receive.
“As a single parent and a student, raising a child can be extremely stressful. When people in this community donate items like diapers and wipes to help my son, it means my family doesn’t have to struggle.”
*Names were changed to protect the confidentiality of the client.
Want to donate supplies? We’re collecting diapers, wipes, baby lotion, baby wash, diaper cream, socks and hats (newborn – 6 months; new items only). Items can be dropped off at the United Way office located at 250 Venture Circle, Nashville, TN 37228.
We also need volunteers to sort donated baby supplies into bags for new mothers on Tuesday, May 23. Click here to sign up!