One in five moms have had to choose between diapers and food. Using cloth diapers can aleviate that burden.
Obviously, I’m all about using cloth diapers. Why else would I write for Cloth for a Cause and have an entire other website devoted to nothing but using cloth diapers? There are a lot of reasons for my love of cloth, but there’s one thing that I have never had to consider. While reading my Google news feed on my smart phone from the comfort of my own bed, I came across a troubling statistic: “One in five mothers have had to choose between food and diapers for their baby.”
I found that statistic on a Canadian news site regarding a local fundraiser to help with disposable diapers. That’s here in Canada. This isn’t a scary statistic about how things can fall through the cracks in the States. It’s here.
When you think about it, it makes sense. Buying disposable diapers is expensive, even if you can rely on a place like Costco to buy them in bulk or you buy a bunch of them when they are on sale at your local Superstore. Couple that with Canadians taking their one year mat leave and experiencing an income reduction (not that I’m complaining; our mat leave is among the best in the world!), and that can make the cost of buying disposable diapers even more painful.
Using cloth diapers can take care of a lot of that. However, the big reason that a lot of people are not jumping on the using cloth diapers bandwagon is the expense. The start up cost of $200 or more can be intimidating and well beyond the reach of many. Cloth for a Cause can help parents who are interested in using cloth diapers get past the financial hurdle.
We can help that mother who is choosing between food and diapers. It’s a position that no one should ever have to be in. Spread the word: we’re here to help. The chances are pretty high that you know one of the twenty percent who are struggling.
How can we help spread the word that using cloth diapers can be a viable alternative for that twenty percent?
At this time of year, I see a lot of posts asking how we teach our children about the spirit of giving. Let’s be honest: without teaching children to give, it’s not something that they will always learn. Some decide that their method of teaching children to give will be through books and stories. Others demonstrate the concept of giving by volunteering with the family at a local soup kitchen or some other method. Another popular method is adopting a family for the holidays or buying for a child off of the holiday tree. Then there’s the ever popular method of the pre-Christmas toy purge.
I have another method. It’s not necessarily the most sophisticated method, and it’s not something that my children will understand for a long time, but it works for me. I give back by volunteering with Cloth for a Cause. It’s an all year thing.
I suck at sewing. Pearl, the founder and my friend, has demonstrated how to repair cloth diapers for the charity, but it’s just… Yeah, it’s over my head. That means that the majority of diaper repairs are out. There are a few things that I do to help. I write for this blog. I can repair snaps. And I am amazing at laundry.
Yeah, it turns out that when you’re working with a cloth diaper charity like Cloth for a Cause, being amazing at laundry is a useful skill. Cloth diapers can come in with all kinds of issues: elastics (which are Pearl and Megan’s domain in the Prince George chapter) and snaps, or repelling and stink. I can fix those things.
Right now, my younger children are still in diapers themselves. However, a time will come when they are no longer wearing diapers and are reasonably self-sufficient. By that time, they’ll have learned that giving is important. I know that doing this work is not only helping other families, but it’s also teaching children to give.
Are you teaching your children to give to others? How are you sharing this lesson?
We’re pretty awesome at Cloth for a Cause. We’re young moms. (Okay, some of us are young. Others, like me, are in denial and insist that youth goes beyond a number.) We’re technically savvy. Some of us are pretty crafty, too.
Now you can find Cloth for a Cause in a lot more places than just our blog. We’re on Facebook! Not only do we have a page for the main Cloth for a Cause organization, but each chapter has a page, too. This is awesome because it means that you can keep up with news for the whole organization and news for your region. There’s a whole lot more to social media than just Facebook. So now you can find Cloth for a Cause on Twitter! And Instagram. We’ve also got a YouTube channel and we just started up on Pinterest.
Where we are:
What would you like to see from Cloth for a Cause on our social media boards? Are there any other social media boards that Cloth for a Cause should show up on?
Why so complicated? (Image from stockxchg, used with permission.)
One of the toughest parts of using cloth diapers is coming up with a good routine for washing cloth diapers. This is made even more confusing by the wide range of advice you’ll get from different cloth diapering moms.
The basics are cold rinse, hot wash, double rinse. Use a cloth diaper safe detergent. After that? Washing cloth diapers is full of variables that will depend on a variety of things. Continue reading