Partner Stories: Baby Luv

​Baby Luv and PSMJax Partner to Bring Clothing and Hope to

Expectant Mothers and Families With Young Children.

Baby Luv.jpg

Baby Luv operates out of a small cottage with a welcoming front porch just west of the river on Timequana Road. Three days a week, for two hours, the doors open wide to give low-income mothers and families free access to the essentials of baby and mother care, including diapers, clothing, shoes, personal hygiene essentials, cribs, strollers, baby seats, and more. While the need for clothing and other essentials is the draw, both bags and hearts are filled here.

 

Baby Luv is a program of Community Health Outreach, which also runs a food pantry and a low-cost medical and dental clinic. Baby Luv has become a place where women know that grace abounds, and they feel safe sharing their life stories. “We are not just a come in, grab your diapers, and go kind of agency,” said Shavon Botsford, Baby Luv’s director.  “We want women to feel that if there is more they need on a mental, emotional, or spiritual level, they can ask for it here.”

 

Initially, clients come for clothing, diapers, and other essentials. A fresh supply attracts clients over the long term as they work to keep their children clothed through rapid growth spurts. Over time, relationships develop as the staff and volunteers lend an ear and gain the confidence of clients. In addition to stocking the small space with an abundance of clothing, books, toys, and more, staff looks for signs of emotional distress, abuse, or mental health issues among caregivers. Providing clothing and other essentials often leads to healing hearts. “We are here to listen, we are here to connect, and we are here to support,” said Botsford.

 

Two days a week, staff restock the shop with clothing and other household goods from PSMJax and other donors. “We pick up inventory from PSMJax once a month, and having items already sorted and labeled by size and season is a real-time-saver,” said Botsford. “We are able to get those items out on the floor without delay, and they go quick!  We are packed after we unload a pickup from PSMJax, but within 2-3 weeks, we are ready for a new batch. If we could make pick-up runs more than once a month, we would!”

 

PSMJax has made it easier for Baby Luv to include clothing for different age groups and even trendy items for mothers thanks to donations from a valuable women’s retail partner. Valuable baby equipment is often included. Botsford explained the greatest reward is seeing the serendipity that occurs here so often. “To see the crib that was donated come off the truck and then literally, as we are unloading it, to see a mother come up and say, ‘I need this…I’m about to give birth next month’ is the most beautiful thing,” Botsford said.

 

While PSMJax does not make direct contact with the individuals who receive the clothing, hygiene, and household donations, their role is invaluable to the agencies they support. “PSMJax is literally the lifeblood of our program,” said Botsford. “We have a skeleton crew of volunteers, and the organization PSMJax provides makes our job so much easier! If you are supporting the mission of PSMJax, you are supporting us!”

 

PMSJax distributes over 300,000 items annually to over 23 partner agencies that redistribute it at no cost to approximately 60,000 recipients in northeast Florida, Palm Beach County, and various other countries. The goal is to connect those who have with those who need, and though they don’t physically put clothes into the hands of the needy, they secure and manage the inventory for dozens of organizations that do. Together we achieve what cannot be done alone and change lives in the process.

Shavon Botsford, Baby Luv's Director

Baby Luv website

More Partner Stories

Baby Luv Pregnancy Center: Baby Luv and PSMJax Partner to Bring Clothing and Hope to
Expectant Mothers and Families With Young Children.


Donovin Darius Foundation: The Donovin Darius Makes Clothing Distribution Part of Every Community Outreach Through a Partnership With PSMJax.

Family Promise of Jacksonville: Bedding and School Uniforms Fill a Big Void for Families Served by Family Promise of Jacksonville.

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