Just before the COVID pandemic hit, a young mother desperate for help called the Parenting Network’s New Carlisle office in March. With new restrictions in place, FYI had to think of new ways to help her.
“I knew she was pregnant and had another little one in diapers, so even though she was not officially signed up as a client, I called her and we arranged to get some supplies to her,” said New Carlisle Office Coordinator Julie Daniel. “She couldn’t believe we would give her diapers. She was just so overwhelmed and grateful.”
FYI found ways to adapt its Parenting Network program to reach clients and continue its mission of empowering families and providing hope.
The Parenting Network’s normal protocol is for clients to complete training lessons and earn Baby Bucks, which can then be used to “shop” for supplies in the Baby Store that is located in all three offices in New Carlisle, Fairborn and Springfield.
“At this time, we’re only accepting Baby Bucks for large items like cribs, car seats, and strollers,“ Julie said. “They are able to save the rest of the Baby Bucks for when we reopen completely.”
Not giving out Baby Buck doesn’t mean FYI is giving out needed supplies to clients, though.
“We also set up a time for them to come and pick up diapers and other supplies,” Daniel said. “We have a couple of clients who just had a baby, so we verified their address and dropped them off to them. They were so grateful.”
Client training and mentoring sessions have even taken on a different look.
“Since we’ve been closed to clients, I’ve been doing mentoring over the phone with them,” Daniel said. “We’re not just jumping in and asking them about their homework. We are asking how they are doing and if they are facing any really big challenges. Right now, they not only have to be a full-time mom but also a full-time teacher.”
FYI’s our long-held goal is more than just providing material relief with its Parenting Network, but to come alongside and support families.
For more information or to donate or volunteer at one of our three Parenting Network offices (New Carlisle, Springfield or Fairborn), call FYI’s main office at (937) 845-0403 or email Nikki at [email protected] or Pat at [email protected].
Family and Youth Initiatives