The #Periscopathon is in just a few short weeks and it’s my goal to get every DDL reader involved. Not only will your shares, donations, and hearts help Giving Diapers, Giving Hope reach their fundraising goal of $5,000 but it will help our overall goal to educate and inform the general public that cloth diapers can be a solution for diaper need.
$5,000 seems like a lot, right? To be fair, it IS a lot of money. For a small non-profit $5,000 makes an enormous impact in the budget, especially when you know that GDGH has little overhead costs thanks to the volunteer administrative staff AND the labor that GroVia employees provide at no cost to us. If you’d like to see more about GDGH’s finances we have it all spelled out in a blog post. Our goal is to be transparent about everything we do.
To raise this much takes very little when you consider how large the cloth diaper community is. When there are groups that have 6,000, 10,000, even 50,000+ members you know that we are out there! Just a single dollar from each member would fund GDGH’s program for the entire year AND allow for growth. Many of us have been through diaper need or realize how lucky we are that we already have cloth diapers when unexpected costs arise like a major appliance breaking, or plumbing disasters. GDGH can only provide the diapers we have, and only pay for the shipping fees ($15 per family at this time, leaving $20 each family owes that covers shipping to and from their home) if we have the funds to do so.
Each week we see dozens of families that apply to our organization and we ask them how cloth diapers could help their family. Here are just 3 of the hundreds of stories that represent the diversity of families applying and diaper need in the US.
“I am a single mother of a ten and a twenty three month old. Currently I am unable to work and am living with family and am having to rely on the generosity of others. Food stamps and the WIC program take care of our nutritional needs, so the only serious expense I have to worry about is diapering. I have a few cloth diapers, but not enough to use them exclusively, which would be a tremendous help. … this set of diapers for the boys will allow me to use strictly cloth so that that extra money can be spent trying to better our family’s situation.”
“I am a single mother who simply can not afford diapers. A good friend of mine gave me a set of cloth diapers when I had my baby and I was also able to obtain a hand crank washer to wash them and line dry, it has been beyond helpful. However, my baby has grown a lot since birth and has outgrown all of the cloth diapers and covers that I had. I donated them (bc I didn’t know about this program) to the [redacted] survival center, where I have found much needed help with food and clothing for my children. I am able to get about 15-20 disposable diapers from the food pantry there, but only once a month. I would rather use cloth and I can not afford to buy the disposable kind. Giving Diapers Giving Hope was just suggested to me by a close friend and I feel that my family would greatly benefit from your program. Thank you for doing what you do, and I hope you are able to help my family.”
“GDGH’s generous lending of a set of cloth diapers for our son would relieve pressure from the expense of disposables. I actually didn’t think of considering cloth until I watched the GDGH promo video. Something in the video deeply resonated with me…it was that those in poverty are forced to make their babies wear their diapers for too long to make them last longer. And it also showed a wife texting her husband that they wouldn’t have enough diapers to last until payday. Both of these situations have happened to my family. This isn’t fair for our baby. He shouldn’t have to wear dirty diapers. This would make cloth attainable for us. Without this, we would never be able to afford cloth diapers.”
What I want people to understand most about diaper need is that it can happen to anyone, at any time. When I made the above me mentioned video I included “luxury” items like the washing machine and the smart phone because I understand that many families in financial hardship own a phone and have a washing machine in their home.
Being that more than 60% of families living below the federal poverty level have a washing machine in their home why can’t cloth diapers be a solution for them? “but Kim… why should poor families have one more burden on them [washing diapers]?” I recently asked on my Facebook page how many single mothers use cloth diapers and how they made it work. The most popular response from single moms was that they would put the diapers in the washer at bedtime, then toss in the dryer right before they went to sleep. The diapers were waiting- clean and dry- the next morning. By my own calculations I found it takes 30 minutes of actual “work” to wash, dry, and fold cloth diapers. The other time the diapers are being washed by the machine. It’s very comparable to handwashing where the average time spent washing, wringing diapers, and hanging to dry took 40 minutes based on 2014 survey responses in the Flats and Handwashing Challenge. I’ve been told many times by families that they are willing to put in the extra work of cloth diapering because it means their baby can always have access to clean diapers. I don’t pretend to understand the hardships others face I just know that when it is possible to wash diapers instead of going without or stretching the disposable diapers to their limits- I would choose to wash diapers. Getting those cloth diapers is the struggle.
That’s why GDGH exists, to alleviate the start-up cost for families so that they can be financially unburdened by disposables and take charge of their baby’s diaper needs with cloth diapers.
Now that you can understand the needs families face and how GDGH helps, please take a moment to learn about the Periscopathon with this video. You can see how to follow all the broadcasters by viewing the video on Facebook.
Enter the giveaway and make your donation now until Sept 28 on the Giving Diapers, Giving Hope blog!