St. Louis, MO – June 8, 2016 – This year, April Showers brought in more than May flowers.
With help from community members and businesses, Girl Scouts throughout eastern Missouri collected more than 1.1 million personal care items through this year’s April Showers, the organization’s annual collection drive and largest community service project. The items, ranging from toothbrushes and shampoo to bandages and diapers, benefit hundreds of food pantries and homeless shelters throughout the region. Girl Scouts spent more than 36,000 hours on the project, with adult volunteers and family members pitching in more than 26,000 hours.
The annual collection began in 1998, and takes place over two weekends. The drive kicks off with Showering the Community, an event where community members are invited to donate items at select Walmart stores. Also during this first weekend, girls go door-to-door distributing recyclable plastic bags in their communities, and return the following weekend to collect the filled bags, which residents have filled with personal care items. Girl Scouts also works with Operation Food Search, Schnucks and Dierbergs to collect items, and receives sponsorships from Ameren Missouri and Macy’s.
April Showers addresses an important community need: almost a quarter of Missouri households eligible for Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits, which do not apply to the purchase of personal care items. Consequently, thousands of families and individuals count on donations to their local shelters and food pantries for these essentials.
“Every year, communities, families and organizations show they stand with girls and support Girl Scouts by contributing to this crucial initiative, and we are grateful for their support,” said Bonnie Barczykowski, Girl Scouts of Eastern Missouri CEO. “The impact of these 1.1 million items will surely improve quality of life for so many children and adults across our region.”