After seeing an opportunity to fill a need for many individuals in the area, St. Louis Catholic Church’s Magi Baby Chest hopes to become a place where parents can receive help when they need it most.
The Magi Baby Chest is a newly-formed charity located at 616 S. Gosse Blvd. in Princeton. The organization looks forward to offering a baby-centered charity where parents can fulfill the needs of their children.
“It’s going to be a baby supply center,” Magi Baby Chest Director Jessica Murphy said. “We are going to carry items all the way from newborn to 4-T sizes. Its goal is to help young children and families that have young children.”
The charity will initially function through monthly drives where those in need are encouraged to come and make an optional $5 donation when able. Participants will then receive coupons to grab the items they need.
“From month to month they are not always going to need the same items,” Murphy said. “We will have clothes, diapers, formula, bottles and if it has anything to do with babies, you name it, we’ll probably have it.”
The Magi Baby Chest also plans to have used items that have been donated to allow those participating to have the opportunity to search for what they need themselves from month to month.
All of the items that will be available, have been provided through donations of the items themselves or monetary donations.
“We’ve had a lot of monetary donations, so we have been blessed with that,” Murphy said. “We plan on purchasing a lot of items as well and then it will be supplemented when people feel the need and want to donate physical items.”
The organization will not function as a daycare, provide counseling, or transportation but rather offer a limited, but significant amount of baby and toddler supplies to those in need.
The charity was publicly announced on August 25 and, since that time, has received an outpouring of donations. The organization has also reached out to surrounding churches and businesses to let people know that this option is soon coming to the area.
The Magi Baby Chest will be holding its grand opening from 9 a.m. to noon on Oct. 1 at 616 S. Gosse Blvd. The organization hopes to offer an early month distribution with a donation drive over the following weeks to replenish what is given out.
“As the word gets out, we are hoping that it can become a wider-community supported center,” Murphy said.
The initial idea for this charity came up toward the end of July when St. Louis Catholic Church Pastor Msgr. James Kruse had lunch with a parishioner leader. The topic of what can the church do for social outreach and to help people in need came up.
“After that lunch, what stuck in my mind was the idea of a baby pantry to provided assistance to needy families,” Kruse said. “I have to say, it grew very quickly from just ideas to concrete.”
Once plans began to come together, the organization decided that instead of offering a month’s supply of all items for just a few, they would look to create a place where people can come and pick up a few items to help cover some of the gaps in their baby’s care.
“The coupons allow people to have a limit of what they can get, but at the same time they are able to get a variety of things that will meet their specific needs,” Kruse said.
While the organization is church-based they mentioned that this will not be a charity that questions its participants faith, lifestyle choices or background, but rather one that accepts all who are in need of a helping hand.
“It’s not just about the gifts or the items. we want people to feel loved and supported when they come to the center,” Murphy said. “That’s the whole goal, it to feel radical hospitality of not just getting physical material items but that love that they feel when they come in.”