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For the nearly one in five women living below the poverty line in Newaygo County, sacrifices are made when it comes to their basic needs.

When you struggle to pay for necessities like food and rent, buying essentials like personal hygiene and feminine care products can lag. The reality is non-food needs place an additional burden on financially struggling households, according to research by the University of Illinois for Feeding America and by St. Louis University.

“While we might know women, men and families who can’t put food on their tables, we probably don’t realize they also can’t afford personal hygiene and basic care items,” said Melissa Geroux, a Self-Sufficiency Specialist with TrueNorth Community Services.  “That puts them at great risk for their own health and well-being. That’s why we decided we needed to do even more to help.”

From November 16 to 24, TrueNorth is collecting personal hygiene and feminine care products to help women and their families get back on their feet. There are collection drop boxes for the drive at the Croton Township, Fremont, Grant, Hesperia, Newaygo and White Cloud libraries.

Among the personal hygiene items sought by TrueNorth’s Housing & Family Services Division are:

  • Body soap
  • Conditioner
  • Deodorant
  • Grooming/manicure sets
  • Lotion
  • Razors and shaving cream
  • Shampoo or dry shampoo
  • Tampons and pads
  • Tissues
  • Toilet paper
  • Toothpaste and toothbrushes
  • Towels
  • Wash cloths 

For more details, contact Geroux at (231) 924-0641, ext. 143, or

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