The baby layette program is a very big part of the Community Aid Committee. We pack diaper bags full of items that new mothers will need as they begin to care for their babies. We load the bags with 2 dozen disposable diapers, a baby towel and washcloths, a receiving blanket, several onesies, a play outfit and top it all off with a handmade afghan and matching hat.
We work with Harbor UCLA’s MAMA’S Neighborhood program and deliver the bags when the agency requests them. The bags are given as welcome gifts to mothers as they enter the parent education program set up by the clinic.
Most often they request 30 bags at a time, and they usually like them to be an even mix of baby girl bags, baby boy bags and “neutral” bags (for mamas who want to be surprised!)
While waiting for Harbor UCLA’s call, we do a lot of shopping to get ready. Always trying to find a good deal, but still provide cute, practical items for the babies and their mothers.
When the call comes, we spring into action, and form an assembly line in the Chapter House’s board room. Several volunteers load the bags with the needed items, and one or two people provide the quality control needed to ensure that each bag has all the required items.
We can purchase everything we need except the handmade afghans and hats, and for these items, we depend on our own volunteers. We are always on the lookout for additional people to knit or crochet baby blankets. We even have the support of a local church, whose Knitting and Crocheting ministry provides blankets and hats when we need them.
– by Linda McCann
Community Aid Chair 2023-24