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The Maker's Place Celebrates Our First Birthday!

Updated: Jul 29, 2019

The Trenton skyline, including Turning Point UMC, a Maker's Place partner

At the Maker’s Place, we celebrate “First Birthdays,” for children who reach one year of age. On day 365, a baby is no longer a risk of becoming an infant mortality statistic. They’re a survivor!

There’s another First Birthday we’re celebrating this month: the first birthday of the Maker’s Place. One year ago, the Maker’s Place was born. And a year later, the Maker’s Place is in diapers: metaphorically and literally! I see so much potential as we continue to grow with families and develop as an organization. And I’d like to tell you what’s next.

A Community Diaper Bank and Beyond

Last Christmas, the Maker’s Place put out a call for diapers. The generosity of United Methodists and others was overwhelming. By the end of that first Diaper Drive, we had collected nearly 100,000 diapers. United Methodists love to give diapers!

Just last week, at our most recent “Diaper Depot”--a pop-up ministry where we distribute diapers to families with children--over 150 parents, grandparents, and kids showed up, even during a heat wave. We played music and passed out freeze pops, prayed with families asking for blessings for their children, and celebrated God’s abundance in our midst. People in Trenton are passionate about diapers!

We think we’re onto something. Which is why we want to keep it going. Over the next year, our goal is to establish the Maker’s Place as a community-based diaper bank in the city of Trenton.

What’s a diaper bank? A diaper bank is a lot like a food pantry (in fact, sometimes they’re even called “diaper pantries”) only instead of shelf-stable food, a diaper bank gives out diapers! In Trenton, the single largest demographic group of people living in poverty is women under the age of 34.* In simple terms, that means many mothers struggle to provide enough diapers for their families. We know that diapers keep babies safe and provide dignity for families. Studies have even shown that diaper banks have positive economic benefits for their entire region.**

We believe that diapers will be the flagship service for the Maker’s Place. But our vision is bigger than just diapers. We want to be a place where families can not only receive diapers for their children, but join a community that celebrates their gifts, assets, and aspirations. A place where new forms of mission and ministry come to life--like the Farm to Family pilot program we’re running this summer. A place where all God’s children can experience life in an abundant community, and where everyone can use their gifts to be makers of better lives and neighborhoods.

Bring New Things to Life

You can be part of the life of the Maker’s Place. As we step into our second year of ministry, we hope you’ll join us.

First and foremost, you can donate diapers. We’re going to be doing another Diaper Drive this Christmas. Please put it on your church calendar, or suggest hosting a drive at your work or school. You can even start donating diapers now: we’re always looking for diaper donations, especially size 4-6. Consider it a ‘First Birthday’ present for the Maker’s Place!

Second, you can volunteer with us. You can volunteer at a Diaper Depot, or sign up to bundle diapers on Wednesdays. We invite you to Trenton to see first-hand what God is doing through the Maker’s Place.

And finally, you can give financially. In the next year, we’d like to find a dedicated building for the Diaper Depot, and expand our programs and services. But we can’t do it alone. Consider contributing personally, and/or talking to your church about adding the Maker’s Place to your ministry budget. Email michaelreed@makersplace.org.

Our mission is to be a place where all God’s children experience abundant community. Thank you for helping us do that, through the simple gift of diapers. We hope you’re as excited about our ‘First Birthday’ as we are. We’re excited for what’s next!