Working for a charity, donations mean a lot to us. Without them we wouldn’t be able to do what we do. When we get a large, unexpected donation, watch out! Smiles and cheers galore around the office! A few weeks back we got notice that we would get a donation of baby mattresses – 6 pallets worth!!! Whoo-hoo!!! We were excited to say the least. We work with so many shelters and organizations that would totally benefit from these mattresses. Couple them with donated strollers, walkers and other baby items we receive and BAM! Our very first Baby Gift Bank was created!! Funny how things never work out as you expect them…
Fast forward a week. Delivery day!!! Yay!!! But not quite… What we were expecting to be baby mattress (those that fit into cribs and toddler beds) turned out to be something that looks, as my colleague pointedly stated, a miniature ironing board. We were a little stunned and totally speechless. While we weren’t exactly sure what the items in the shipment were, our biggest concern was what were we going to do with over 2200 of them?!?!
After a little brainstorming, we coined our new friends “multi-purpose baby mats” (nice, huh?)J. They can be used in bassinets, as changing pads, or, as I suggested, art projects for preschoolers (totally kidding about that one…sorta)! Now the challenge was finding a new home for our multi-purpose friends. I’ll be the first to admit that I didn’t think it was going to be an easy job. My response to our Distribution Team – “be prepared for the backlash in the surveys”. Maybe I was being pessimistic or maybe I was just having a bad day. Either way, I wasn’t prepared for what happened next.
In 2 days those things were gone!!! And not just gone, but “thank you so much (with tears in their eyes and voice) we can totally use these” gone. I was shocked, but pleasantly surprised. Something my mama used to say to me when I was little came back full force: “See, things aren’t always as bad as they seem!” One person’s trash (and these were not trash by any means!) really is another person’s treasure! I’m super excited that our facilities were able to put these to good use. Now while I hope to never have to go through the unexpected deliver scenario again, I’m really glad things worked out the way they did. Good things do come from unexpected circumstances!