A big box of Huggies is around $45, or $0.36 a diaper. A container of formula can be anywhere from $18-$35 a canister. A basic stroller can be $50 and run upwards of hundreds of dollars. Pair these ongoing high costs with the fact that almost 40% of children in the City of Richmond live below the poverty line, and you can only imagine the tough choices parents face when it comes to providing for their children. That’s why Little Hands Virginia is here to make sure children from ages 0-3 have the essentials to thrive from day one.
Little Hands Virginia collects new and nearly new baby care fundamentals through grassroots community drives, and in 2023, it is holding an inaugural “A Magical Night at the Museum” family benefit, presented by Capital Square, to raise even more funds. This event has been years in the making, with planning underway just as the pandemic hit in 2020.
“Rather than trying to launch a brand new fundraiser virtually, we decided to wait until it was possible to be in person and go all out,” said Taylor Keeney, founder of Little Hands Virginia. “A lot of benefits in town are adults-only and, given the work that we do and community we serve, we wanted our first event to bring families together to advance our mission and learn more about we do. Most importantly, we want this event to be a fun evening out for adults and kids in support of Little Hands.”
The benefit will take place on Saturday, Jan. 28 from 5 – 7 p.m. at the Virginia Museum of History & Culture. Little Hands will take over the space for an evening of music, mystery story time readers, a scavenger hunt, art with local artists and magical surprises around every corner.
Adults and children will enjoy food that appeals to the young and young at heart. Beer and wine will be available for purchase. Tickets are $75 for adults and $25 for children.
“Our fundraising goal for our first year of Night at the Museum is $50,000,” Keeney said. “We have directly supported over 1,500 children in 2022. That’s up from 1,000 in 2021 and 800 in 2020. So, we are planning for at least 20% growth in 2023. This means adding staff, increasing our office space and developing even more strategic partnerships to keep our shelves stocked.”
In addition to expanding its staff and facilities to meet community demand, Little Hands also is planning to launch more programs in 2023 that will ensure more families aren’t struggling to meet basic childcare needs.