One of Assistance League® of Diablo Valley’s eight philanthropic programs, Community Programs, umbrellas the Baby Bags project, where member volunteers apply assembly line precision when stuffing clothing, diapers, wipes, teething rings, “chewies,” books, and a toy into baby bags. These much appreciated bundles then go to Aspiranet, whose staff members distribute them to hospital identified mothers of at risk infants and toddlers in West Contra Costa County.
On Wednesday, January 9, Mrs. Odessa Caton, Welcome Home Baby District Director-Aspiranet, addressed member volunteers at the Assistance League of Diablo Valley regular chapter meeting. A veteran professional in the social services community, Mrs. Caton has a Master of Science degree in Developmental Psychology, with a focus on infant and early childhood development. Aspiranet’s mission,“Raising Hope, Empowering the Community,” strives to help the familiy and the infant bond by screening client mothers bi-monthly for depression, offering a parenting curriculum called “Kids Growing Great,” providing infants and toddlers bi-monthly developmental screening, conducting “Five and Under classes,” and celebrating an annual Holiday Socialization Event.
Caton further explained that Assistance League of Diablo Valley’s involvement with the Baby Bags project has a profound effect on the families’ wellbeing. These families struggle with such issues as inadequate housing, lack of transportation, unemployment, and isolation. A routine home visit by an Aspiranet staff member holding a bag filled with baby care supplies helps offset these obstacles. One recipient mother commented that knowing people are willing to help her made her feel less alone. Caton then concluded by thanking Assistance League of Diablo Valley and presenting the chapter with a Plaque of Appreciation.
To learn more about Community Programs and Assistance League of Diablo Valley’s seven other philanthropic programs, as well as Assisteens® and Buena Vista Auxiliaries, please visit our website: diablovalley.assistanceleague.org.