More than 4,200 diapers were collected in October by the Southern Arkansas University Phi Beta Lambda chapter as part of the “Every Little Bottom Diaper Drive.” The drive was sponsored by SAU PBL which held a competition between other campus organizations to donate diapers.
“This is the first year we’ve been involved, and we sponsored a competition on the SAU campus to recognize the organization who donated the most diapers,” said Traci Hughes, SAU PBL adviser. “We also competed against other PBL chapters across the state at the Arkansas PBL State Fall Leadership Conference that was hosted on our campus. But the real reason for the drive is to get diapers to people who really need them.”
According to Hughes, one in three American moms struggle to provide their babies with diapers. There is an estimated 1.2 million diaper shortage in Arkansas alone, and there are no assistance programs that help with the need, she said.
Other organizations are taking part in meeting the need as well. The Arkansas Rice Depot is well known for its mission to drive out hunger in the state, but the organization recently its latest initiative to serve Arkansans in need through the Arkansas Diaper Depot. The Depot opened Oct. 7 in Little Rock. The Arkansas Diaper Depot has distribution points in each of Arkansas’ 75 counties. The diapers collected during SAU’s campus-wide Diaper Drive will stay in Columbia County.
SAU PBL’s Diaper Drive started on Oct. 1 and culminated with a Diaper Drop-off Day on Oct. 20. During drop-off day the SAU Students Activities Board gave out free popcorn, provided music, and sponsored the “Guess what’s in the baby’s diaper” game. SAU cheerleaders helped draw attention to the drive by working the donation table.