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Greenwich Mom Forms Group To Pay It Forward

Greenwich mom Karen Giannuzzi had a mess on her hands. A room in the Second Congregational Church’s preschool was filled with boxes, books, clothes, baby wipes and toys to sort for her new organization, Mothers For Others, and its May children’s clothing drive.

“I have four kids, and over the years, I accumulated a lot of stuff that I didn’t know what to do with. I think it’s an issue that a lot of moms face,” said Giannuzzi. “American families in general collect a lot of stuff. When you have a baby, you just have all this baby equipment. And if you happen to be in an affluent town where people can afford it, they accumulate a lot of junk. And then when your children get older, you really want to get rid of it.”

Giannuzzi created Mothers For Others based on Baby Buggy , a similar Manhattan-based charitable organization founded by Jessica Seinfeld. The idea was to meet the needs of people who have used children’s items and donate items to people who can’t afford them.

Through work with the Second Congregational Church, she reached out to Greenwich Social Services, Neighbor-to-Neighbor and Greenwich Family Centers and found families in need of clothes, toys and other “stuff” for their kids. “I couldn’t believe there wasn’t an organization that pulled these groups together and makes it easier for people to donate and get rid of things, and also makes it easier for families who need it to take it,” said Giannuzzi.

Mothers For Others will take gently used items for ages ranging from infants to 14-year-olds. The organization can’t take car seats or cribs. But Giannuzzi said thanks to the generosity of the Greenwich community, the group has received new items as well. The mothers will also pick up donations, because, as Giannuzzi said, people in Greenwich are generous, but they’re also busy.

“The best part is it’s mothers, like myself and my friends and people I know who are making this happen,” she said. “The feedback has been incredibly positive, and I think people see it as a natural fit for Greenwich.”

On May 21, client families from Family Services and Social Services will pick up donations for their children. The hope is to someday make the donation system a permanent fixture in Greenwich.

The drive is being co-sponsored by Family Centers and Greenwich Social Services.

Donations may be dropped off at Second Congregational Church, 139 E. Putnam Ave. in Greenwich until May 21. Mothers For Others will also pick up donations.

For more information, or to arrange an appointment to have donations picked up, contact Karen Giannuzzi at 203-253-2713.

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