Local Woman Helps Families With Children's Pantry - News and Weather For The Quad Cities -

Local Woman Helps Families With Children's Pantry

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There are millions of children living in poverty in the United States and many of them are right here in the Quad Cities. With it getting harder and harder for parents to make ends meet, one local woman decided to take things into her own hands, starting a children's pantry.

Nicole Burns is the founder of the Little Hearts Children's Pantry in Davenport. Burns says she struggled to make ends meet when her boys were little, so she vowed that as soon as she was able, she would try and help parents in the same situation. For the last two years she has been running the pantry out of her garage.

"When I started I figured I would help maybe 20 to 30 people. I am at 414 in less than 2 years and that is a lot of kids in this area, and I am sure that doesn't even begin to touch the amount of kids in this area that need help."

Burns says when she first started her children's pantry she had no idea how quickly it would grow. Every nook and cranny in her garage is filled with a toy, stroller, or tub full of clothes. They are all items she has either had donated by word of mouth or she bought herself at yard sales.

"Sometimes you get more donations than you can handle and other times you go for weeks or a month or so and don't get anything."

Burns says families in need come to her and she gives them what she can for free. Diapers, baby wipes, and formula go especially fast.

"I think everybody is overwhelmed to some extent because it is a hard thing to reach out and admit when you have nothing for your kids."

The mother of two and full time daycare provider says even though collecting, storing, and cleaning the donations (she's done 32 loads of laundry in the past 2 days) is no easy task, she loves to see how big of a difference one person can make.

 "It's definitely the most rewarding work I have done in my life. Just to see a simple smile on a moms face when she knows 'now my kid has boots or she has a coat so she can play outside in the snow.' The feeling is indescribable."

Burns says she would like to see the pantry continue to grow and one day be able to set-up shop in a building or church. She says she is always in need of donations. She collects items for everyone from newborns to adults. To find out how you can help just click the following link: http://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Little-Hearts-Childrens-Pantry/261613630550194?fref=ts