The Covering Weld Diaper Bank in Weld County and WeeCycle, an Aurora-based diaper bank serving all of Colorado, are participating in the National Diaper Bank Network’s study to measure the economic and health impacts of providing diapers to families.
Around the United States, many families are concerned about accessing diapers for a variety of reasons. For one in three families, diaper need resulting from limited income is an everyday occurrence. More than 250 diaper banks around the country work to fill this gap.
“We know that diapers change lives. This study will help us prove it and provide our funders with more details about this need,” said Amelia Ritchhart, family support coordinator with United Way of Weld County. “Most Northern Colorado child care providers require parents to provide diapers. No diapers means no child care, and that keeps parents out of work, school and other essential activities. By working with a team of economists, we’ll be able to quantify the impact of free diapers that supplement a families existing supply.”
The Economic Impact Study is being conducted by the National Diaper Bank Network (NDBN). Both WeeCycle and the Covering Weld Diaper Bank are NDBN members, which as a network of diaper banks meet high standards of transparency, efficiency and community responsiveness.
“We’re grateful to have Covering Weld and WeeCycle as part of the Economic Impact Study,” said NDBN CEO Joanne Goldblum. “Some of the best diaper banks from coast to coast are part of this work. We know that many assumptions get made about the people we serve. This is a chance for families experiencing diaper need to have their voices heard.”
One in three U.S. families cannot afford an adequate supply of diapers each month to keep their children clean, dry and healthy. A smaller NDBN pilot study showed that families that received free diapers from a diaper bank gained in income and that their children had diaper rash less often and required fewer sick visits to the pediatrician.
WeeCycle and United Way of Weld County work with partner agencies to reach families, including collecting data from diaper and wipes recipients for this project. “This study, like all our work, would not be possible without our partners,” noted Lindsey Zaback, development director with WeeCycle. “We are so grateful to be collaborating with agencies that both help families with their immediate needs and are dedicating time to explore the root causes of poverty and diaper need. The data from this study will be used to inform policy and to create lasting change for those experiencing diaper need in Colorado.”