The decision to cloth diaper is one of the single most economical decisions that a family can make. The tangible benefit to their family’s financial health is immediately felt. There is no doubt that cloth diapers save you money, and you can see a return on your investment in the matter of a few short months. But what about families who cannot afford to invest in a $400 stash of pocket diapers up front, or even $100 for prefolds and covers?
A family might spend $40-60 per month on disposable diapers, or $14 per week on packages of Pampers from the grocery store, but if budget is an issue, then to drop a hundred dollars on one diaper purchase is out of the question. Especially for families who are having to choose between food and diapers, the epidemic is wide spread and keeping families trapped in buying that one small package of diapers each week.
For families like this, is there another way? In fact there are several ways to skirt around this commercial booby trap! A family could buy used cloth diapers in the secondhand market or reuse items around your house as diapers.
Another option is to sign up for the services of a Cloth Diaper Bank. These banks have sprung up around the country and multiplied over the past 3 years. Many banks are local, but there are 2 who ship nationally: Giving Diapers Giving Hope (GDGH) and The Rebecca Foundation. You can go here to see a list of all of the Cloth Diaper Banks and here to see a map of where they are all located.
Each bank uses different income guidelines and application requirements for documenting diaper need. Some of these programs lend diapers, while others give them away. Either way, they all help families start cloth diapering.
A family can expect to receive anywhere from 12-40 cloth diapers, and most banks also provide assistance in the form of Cloth Diapering 101 classes, mentors, resources, or other guidance.
To find out if there is a cloth diaper bank near you, explore the list and options linked above. Even if you already cloth diaper, there are often opportunities to volunteer or donate your own used diapers.
Check out this video, made by Kim Rosas of Dirty Diaper Laundry.