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It's a community baby shower

Soroptimists seeking baby items for needy

On Saturday, March 3, Soroptimist International of Mt. Adams will sponsor a Community Baby Shower at Skyline Hospital in White Salmon from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

The club will host a table in the lobby of Skyline Hospital and accept baby shower items from community members. The club will then donate collected items to First Steps, a division of the Department of Social and Health Services that assists and supports new mothers and their babies.

"The focus of First Steps is to assist new mothers with little or no resources to provide for their newborns," explained Tishy Stein of First Steps. "59 percent of babies born in Klickitat County, and 42 percent of babies born in Skamania County, are born into low-income conditions. Sometimes the mother has fled a domestic violence situation, sometimes the mother simply has few financial resources, and sometimes drugs come into play and the child goes immediately into foster care. Some of these babies are born without the supplies they require, and support from the community at large -- which means just a little help from everyone -- can make such a difference in the lives of these babies."

Soroptimist event coordinator Lorrie Knowles added, "We ask the community to support this important effort by donating newborn-size items. Some suggestions are disposable diapers, pacifiers, receiving blankets and quilts, bottles, socks, baby toys, baby powder, shampoo, cloths and wipes, Q-tips, onesies or T-shirts, pajamas, first aid kits, car seats, and knitted hats and booties. If someone wants to provide support for the mother, things like diaper bags, phone cards, gift cards, and baby books would be very appreciated. We will accept gently used gifts, too."

Donations can also be delivered to Butterflies, Flowers and Gifts in White Salmon the week before and following the event on March 3, and supporters can make cash donations by mailing checks payable to Soroptimist International of Mt. Adams, P. O. Box 152, White Salmon, WA 98672.

Donations through the Mt. Adams club will be distributed to communities within the club's service area, from Stevenson to Dallesport and into the Mt. Adams valley, including Glenwood, Trout Lake and Klickitat.

Soroptimist clubs in Hood River and The Dalles are also hosting baby showers at Providence Hood River Memorial Hospital and Mid-Columbia Medical Center as part of the national Soroptimist Saturday of Service project.

"Poverty is not a choice; people don't ask to live in poverty and these innocent babies deserve to have their basic needs met. With a little help from everyone, we could ease the burden on new mothers and provide items that could give babies a great start," said Soroptimist of Mt. Adams Co-President Kim Larsen.

"We are really trying to encourage people to become involved in helping the new members of our community. We plan to have fun, too, by offering refreshments and offering an opportunity to win door prizes to everyone who makes a contribution," said Knowles.

For more information, contact Knowles at 493-1839.


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