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One in three American moms is struggling to provide diapers for her babies. Far too many are stressing each day because they lack the ability to provide their babies with clean, dry diapers.These moms have had to cut back on food, utilities or other necessities to buy diapers. Some have to leave diapers on their babies for one to two days. Or worse yet, dry these diapers in the sun and reuse these unsanitary diapers on their babies.

In an effort to help meet this growing crisis, the National Coalition of Pastors’ Spouses has stepped up to meet this challenge across the nation. Soliciting support from parishioners and church members, pastors’ spouses have been busy collecting and distributing diapers to moms in need during the holiday season.

Having collected more than 3,000 packages of diapers in three weeks via their faith-based organizations, pastors’ spouses distributed these diapers in Christmas baskets to local day care centers and hospitals.On Dec. 20, 2011, more than 1,800 newborn diapers that were collected through Memphis-area churches, were given to the Women’s Hospital at the Regional Medical Center at Memphis, and distributed to new moms delivering babies at The Regional Medical Center at Memphis (The Med) during the holiday season.

According to Fannie Marlow Coleman, first lady of Refreshing Springs COGIC, the organizer and leader of the 2011 Tennessee “Hug-a-baby” diaper drive, “We are so appreciative of the various churches and pastors’ spouses who have heard the clarion cry and have responded to meet this critical diaper need in the Memphis community. In this struggling economy, so many young mothers often have to make decisions on whether to keep their utilities on … or buy baby diapers. So we reached out to pastors’ wives, such as Louise Patterson, president of Bountiful Blessings Inc. and widow of the late Bishop G.E. Patterson, who have come together to make generous donations to this effort.”

The clergy wives this year have already topped last year’s goal, says NCPS president and founder, Vivian Berryhill. To date, NCPS has collected more than 360,000 diapers nationwide, and the number continues to grow.

Photo: (L to R: Paula Lingeman, director of the Women’s Hospital at the Regional Medical Center at Memphis; Fannie Marlow Coleman, first lady of Refreshing Springs COGIC Memphis, TN; Vivian Berryhill, President/founder, NCPS)

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