The Center was the beneficiary of three community-led drives and fundraisers in April. The YMCA of Lincoln, a city council member and a class at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln rallied to raise diapers or money to help the Center’s clients.
Just under 18,200 diapers were collected for the Center through a diaper drive sponsored by the YMCA of Lincoln.
“The YMCA has always been a place people can count on during times of uncertainty,” said Barb Bettin, President and CEO of the YMCA of Lincoln. “Even though our doors are closed, our mission to strengthen the community does not stop, and we will continue to do all we can to help ensure that our neighbors don’t have to worry about basic necessities to keep their families healthy and safe.”
City Council member James Michael Bower also put together a diaper drive to ensure the Center’s diaper supply would hold up to the increase in need.
Bower rallied his social media followers and approached businesses in his district to gather diapers for the Center. In just a few days, he raised more than 2,000 diapers for the Center.
“The folks at the Center for People in Need are working on the front lines putting their own health at risk to make sure families survive this pandemic,” Bower said. “I am so proud of those who stepped up to help those who are taking care of our community.”
The Center also benefited from a community fundraiser led by Strive to Thrive Lincoln, a class on philanthropy at UNL.
Professor Amber Messersmith said the class selected the Center as its beneficiary because they wanted to offer support to the most vulnerable members of the community during the pandemic.
In all, the class was able to raise just over $1,600 in 25 donations, outpacing their 2019 fundraiser by a little over $600.
“Seeing these students open their hearts and wallets to benefit Lincoln’s low-income families, even as they finished their class remotely, and in some cases from another state, was inspiring,” said executive director Chris Funk.
“Not only did they raise money in the midst of a crisis, but they also introduced the Center to their friends and family members who may never have heard of us before,” she said.
The community-led efforts did more than raise money and diapers for Center clients.
“You cannot put a price on the feelings of support and compassion that the fundraiser and diaper drives provided our employees and clients,” said Funk.
“In the midst of an emergency, the community rallied and made it clear ... we’re in this together.”