A local school is extending a helping hand to a group of kids in need.
McDonell Area Catholic Schools kicked off a Diaper Drive will benefit local charities around Chippewa County. Starting on Oct. 22 and extending through Oct. 29., the donations will be given to St. Francesca Resource Center, Catholic Charities, Chippewa County Foster Care Program and Chippewa County Public Health.
Abby Smasal, Chippewa County Foster Care coordinator, said the donations will be of great service to the community, as the number of children in foster care needing diapers continues to increase. As of this week, 120 kids are in the Chippewa County foster care program, 15 of which are under the age of 1 and 20 of which are between the ages of 1-3. This number is dramatically larger than 4-5 years ago when the Chippewa County Foster Care program had 75 kids in its system.
“Being in foster care is a big adjustment for these kids,” Smasal said. “Any donation we receive helps make these kids live a bit easier and they certainly appreciate it. With more and more foster kids being brought into the system in Chippewa County, we need all the help we can get.”
Pam Baughman, a MACS parent who fostered, then adopted three daughters who in the schools, said the system is a challenging one for families, so programs such as the MACS Diaper Drive are essential for the survival of many families.
“Times are tough right now and there are a lot of families struggling financially,” said. “These kids have to deal with a lot and any way we can help is what we should be doing. Caring for kids this young takes a lot of time and money, so at times they may need help.”
To support the drive, you can drop off packages of diapers or wipes at any of the McDonell Area Catholic Schools buildings October 22 and 25-28. Size 3, 4 and 5 diapers and pull-ups are most needed. You may also choose to mail a check (made payable to MACS) to McDonell High School – Diaper Drive, 1316 Bel Air Blvd Chippewa Falls, WI 54729.
Pam Baughman, a MACS parent who fostered, then adopted three daughters who are/were students in the MACS school system, speaks to McDonell students Thursday about the importance of the foster care system.