The East Side Health District Diaper Depot is a WIC/FCM program that partners with the St. Louis Area Diaper Bank to provide free diapers to families receiving services through the East Side Health District. HEALTHIER TOGETHER was invited to support this partnership through the Maternal & Child Health organizations that make up the Healthy Start Consortium, helping to cover fees that allow the Diaper Depot to remain active. Through the Diaper Depot, families can receive 50 free diapers per month per every child under 4 years of age. Additionally, pregnant women can also receive 25 free diapers per month to help them prepare for the upcoming birth of their baby.
On average, infants and toddlers need 8-12 diapers per day. This means that an adequate supply of disposable diapers can cost well over $100.00 each month. Currently, diapers are not available to families through any other assistance programs, making this expense directly out of pocket for parents. Unfortunately, for low-income households unable to afford adequate diaper supplies, this can also lead to more infants spending the entire day or longer in a single diaper. This can increase the risk of numerous health problems for the child including diaper rash, and babies crying from being in a soiled diaper for prolonged periods increasing the risk of physical abuse from caregivers. For working parents who require childcare center assistance, this further compounds the issue. Many centers require disposable diapers to be provided for the children by their parents, and will refuse childcare if the parents are unable to provide them, further hindering the financial status of low-income households.
210,000 diapers were distributed to families in 2020.
Diapers being delivered curbside to a program participant.
Thanks to these partnerships, 2020 proved to be an extremely successful year for the diaper depot. According to the data collected from the Diaper Bank Enrollment and Distribution forms, members stated that they felt like "bad parents" before they were able to get their first diaper bundle from the diaper depot, but 76% of those involved shared that the diaper support directly boosted family health and happiness. This year the East Side Health District was able to distribute over 210,000 diapers, equating to a monetary value of over $48,300, and brought 1,256 new children into the diaper program. By providing this assistance, we can further ensure the continued protection of maternal and child health.
2020 brought 1,256 new children into the East Side Health District diaper program.
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