Like many of you, I recently heard about the horrible conditions of many asylum-seeking migrant children detained at the Southern U.S. border. These include little-to-no access to soap, toothbrushes, water, food, medical care, beds and blankets as well as exposure to a variety of parasites and illnesses. Since becoming a Mom 9 years ago, the thought of any child suffering is agonizing to me. So, this news left me feeling heartbroken and powerless.
The very next day while driving my son, Simon, to camp, I mentioned that I hadn’t heard about any protests to attend or other ways to help. He said, “You could start something.” His words stayed with me throughout the day. He was right. He also suggested that I call it “Babies Need Blankets.” It happens I own a baby blanket business called Robot Bunnies.
Robot Bunnies currently donates a blanket for every one we sell to a child in foster care in the U.S. (working with the amazing NGO Arizona Helping Hands). I made this a part of my business plan because, as I mentioned, I hate the thought of any child being unhappy, let alone deprived, mistreated or endangered. I also believe wholeheartedly in the magic and power of blankies – beloved objects that can instantly inspire feelings of love, warmth, soothing and safety in a child.
Simon’s amazing idea came into full focus. We needed to bring as many of our snuggly and comforting blankets to migrant children at the border as possible. The only problem was that, as a start-up, I simply did not have the funds to do it on my own. Thus, “Babies at the Border Need Blankets” was born. We quickly set up a Go Fund Me page with a goal to raise $20,000 by July 25th in order to produce and transport 1000 blankets to the border by August 25th.
We reached out to everyone we know to donate and/or share our cause on social media. We’re overjoyed to have collected nearly $3,500 and 99 shares on Facebook to date but still have a few days and a long way to go to reach our goal. So, if you – like me – feel the deep pang to do something to help these innocent kids, here’s something easy and impactful. Click through to Go Fund Me, give whatever you can and help us spread the word. EVERY LITTLE BIT COUNTS. Then follow our journey on Instagram (@robotbunnies) and/or Facebook.
Whatever we ultimately raise, all funds will go toward blanket production and transportation. My family will drive them to the El Paso, TX border to distribute to migrant children/families awaiting asylum processing in shelters on the Mexican side in Juarez. (Unfortunately, donated goods cannot legally be given to children already in US custody).
With the time frame of our initiative and the short Arizona summer break, I expect Simon will miss a day or two of school to drive the blankets down there. I’m not worried though. I know the experience will be chock full of powerful life lessons he will never forget. And, after all, it was his idea.