Volunteer Project: Baby Gift Basket
Make a newborn cuddle kit for babies in need!
- Infant supplies:See the list below.
- Volunteers:You and your child.
- Container:Something to contain your baby supply kit. It can be as simple as a zipper bag, or as fancy as a Moses basket.
- Before you and your kid go shopping, you may want to contact one of the organizations that deliver kits to babies in need to find out what they are in dire need of. Or just go ahead and pick up the basics. Here are our suggestions for a fabulously full Baby Supply Kit. Don't feel like you have to purchase everything on the list. Just use it as a guide:
Four reusable cloth diapers
One receiving blanket
Baby socks and booties
Gentle baby soap and shampoo
Diaper rash cream and baby powder
Two sleepers (preemie, newborn or 3 to 9 months)
Two gowns (preemie, newborn or 3 to 9 months
Onesies (preemie and newborn)
Pacifiers (Incredibly, many hospitals don't have pacifiers to give to babies who have been through surgery or some other stressful event and are in need of soothing; so toss a few binkies into your kit.
Crib and bassinette sheets
Comfort toys like rattles and lovies
A few books (Goodnight Moon is always an awesome choice for a newborn.)
- Don't forget to pick up something to put your Cuddle Kit in.
- Once your kit is compiled, help your child track down an organization to donate it to. Here are a few options:
Mennonite Central Committee distributes the kits to hospitals, refugee camps and clinics in Bosnia, Haiti, Honduras, Nicaragua, North Korea, Serbia, Russia and the Ukraine; to give to babies in the United States, contact Newborns in Need online or by phone: 417-967-9441; The Church of Latter Day Saints Humanitarian Center is another good choice. Contact them through their Web site, or call 801-240-5954. Also try The Box Project.
- Help your kid drop off or send the kit to your charity of choice. Shipping fees are tax deductible (as is everything else you bought). Just be sure to ask for a receipt from the charity.
- Mission accomplished! Now take your kid out and treat her to an ice cream cone. Let her know she made a difference in someone's life today—and that's no small accomplishment.
- Have your kid involve her friends in this altruistic activity. Help her organize a "Baby Shower" for a baby in need. Ask the invitees to bring something off of the list above and together they can compile a Cuddle Kit. Have your little hostess offer an easy snack to guests, like lemonade and cookies. As the famous anthropologist Margaret Mead said, "Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it's the only thing that ever has." There's your deep thought for the day. Now you can get back to obsessing about what to order for dinner. Chinese, anyone?
- Still looking for the volunteer organization that's right for you and your family? Click here.
- Check out our ages and stages guide to volunteering opportunities.