Larimer County Food Bank Officially Acquires Nappie Project Diaper Program – Loveland Reporter-Herald
Project Nappie, the nonprofit diaper donation association founded by Loveland, will now provide its supply through the Larimer County Food Bank, which has officially acquired the organization.
The Nappie Project has served northern Colorado since 2015 and is dedicated to the supply and distribution of diapers to low-income families. Recently, the program donated its millionth diaper and reached 1.04 million donations in June.
The Larimer County Food Bank, a partner in the project for many years, announced on June 2 that the project would be integrated with the food bank as a new aid program.
While the organization started out as a small, local effort to supply the needy in the county, it has since grown to distribute hundreds of thousands of diapers each year. Over time and during the partnership, the food bank became the main distribution point for the Nappie project.
Jan Touslee, co-founder of the association, said that in 2020, families’ diaper needs increased by 40%. She said during the pandemic, help from the food bank was instrumental, giving them more space and a better method of distribution.
“It’s the way to meet the basic needs of families in one place,” she said. “For me, this is great.”
The project, which was merged with the food bank, will now operate in the west wing of the food bank’s west location in Fort Collins. The space, which was the food bank’s primary distribution site until 2018, has been leased until recently.
“We knew we would be able to store the diapers here,” said Amy Pezzani, CEO of the food bank. She said the acquisition will not only provide the Nappie Project with space, but also logistics, communication and other support to reach as many people in need as possible.
Touslee said that prior to this acquisition, the nonprofit stored diapers in three different locations with an additional office in their home. Since they are now part of the food bank, Touslee said everything was more centralized.
“This gives us a wonderful opportunity,” Touslee said. “This allows us to have all of our inventory in one place. “
Josh Greene, chief operating officer of the food bank, said that for the first year of the new acquisition, operations will run exactly as before without much change. For customers, however, he said there should be no changes as diapers are distributed to food bank sites and other partners who donate diapers.
“If anything, we’re going to have more availability,” Greene said.
The acquisition was celebrated Monday night at the new location, with many boxes of diapers lined up at the entrance to the high-ceiling warehouse. During the open house, food bank employees, Nappie Project employees, community partners and family met, discussed and explored the potential of this acquisition.
“I think this will be a great partnership to develop to reach more families who may be in need and explore the opportunities for what the food bank may look like in the future and what the Nappie Project may look like at the future, ”said Janet Werst, community health supervisor at UCHealth.
Michael Buttram of Rams Against Hunger, a Colorado State University group focused on addressing student food insecurity, said the partnership made sense to help the entire community, including students.
“It’s a logical place,” he said.
Marcia Touslee, Jan’s sister-in-law, said she remembers starting the project, prepping diapers in her living room with a glass of wine. Since then, she has seen the project grow to become what it is today.
“(Jan) dedicated his life to this,” she said.
Those who have been with Project Nappie for years have also said the acquisition will be of great help to their operations.
Tenley Haack, secretary of the Nappie Project board, said one of the things the nonprofit has been working on for years is finding the best space to store and distribute diapers.
“It really, quite frankly, a dream come true,” Haack said.
Pezzani said she hopes the acquisition will help not only those the Nappie Project serves, but also those who built it.
“I felt that we could offer the organization, through this acquisition, the ability to carry on Jan’s legacy while continuing to meet this need for diapers and, potentially in the future, to expand to more families. who need it, ”she said. .