The Plymouth Baby Bank has been called into action more than a hundred times since it was set up in January providing necessary – and sometimes urgent – equipment and provisions free-of-charge to support babies; new Mum’s and families across the city.
The PBB evolved from Southway’s neighbourhood Baby Pantry which had been run by volunteers from the local community centre. Knowing that there was so much more they could do to help parents, Darren and Kelly Lapthorn stepped in and ‘adopted’ the project. With a grant of £1000 from the POP fund Ideas Into Action and £600 from local businesses they rebranding it; set up a Facebook page; printed leaflets and bought some basic equipment, primarily, milk and nappies.
In a single twenty-four-hour period earlier this year the Baby Bank provided emergency provisions for twenty-six families across Plymouth. Darren and Kelly say they couldn’t do it without the help and support of the Southway Community Group which allows them to store equipment in the community centre but perhaps more significantly has given the PBB an online presence on its website. Not only has this helped to recruit volunteers but it has enabled midwifes to contact the PBB on behalf of their patients. From baby milk to moses baskets and potties to prams the baby bank is now providing more support to more families across the city more quickly.
If you’d like more information about the Plymouth Baby Bank please check out their Facebook page.