Diaper Bank of the Ozarks keeps babies healthy and happy by providing access to diapers, basic needs, and educational resources to families in need in our community during pregnancy and beyond while increasing diaper need awareness.
Why are diapers needed?
- About 48% of families report a delay in changing diapers.
- About 32% of families report reusing diapers (from “In Short Supply,” a study commissioned by Feeding America, 2013).
- Many childcare centers require a supply of diapers daily, and without daycare, a parent cannot work.
- Babies who spend a day or longer in one diaper risk potential health problems, such as skin rashes and infections.
- Diaper need is more distressing to moms than not having enough food for the family (from Huggies Every Little Bottom Study).
- Mothers report feelings of guilt and depression because of a lack of diapers.
- Babies who do not have enough diaper changes become irritable and cry more.
- A cranky baby in a stressed family situation may lead to an increased risk for situations of child abuse and neglect.
How are we making an impact?
The Diaper Bank of the Ozarks has touched the lives of over 55,000 babies over the past 6 years by distributing over 3,000,000 disposable diapers and over 350 cloth diaper starter kits. Between 70,000 and 80,000 diapers are donated to 40 local partner agencies in the Springfield Metro and 56 agencies reaching into 58 of our outlying counties who then distribute to families in need. The requests for help with diapers come in daily. Single moms or dads, grandparents raising grandchildren while on a fixed income, the unemployed, underemployed, teen moms, and so many more are affected. Another program of the Diaper Bank is Diapers for Daycare, where we stand beside parents who are required to supply diapers to their daycare provider so that they are able to work and bring home a paycheck.
- Greene County Disposable Diaper Distribution.
The Diaper Bank of the Ozarks partners with 40 agencies serving children in Greene County. These partner agencies include Crosslines, Harmony House, Lifehouse Crisis Maternity Home, Doula Foundation, Pregnancy Care Center and Republic Pregnancy Resource Center. We plan to distribute at least 550,000 diapers through these agencies each year.
- Rural County Diaper Distribution Program.
The Diaper Bank of the Ozarks partners with 56 agencies in the rural counties of the Ozarks, reaching into 56 counties. We plan to distribute at least 450,000 disposable diapers through these agencies each year.
- Diapers for Daycare Program.
Daycare providers require an adequate supply of diapers each day to allow a child to attend their childcare facility. For many families, this is not an easy task. The Diaper Bank of the Ozarks stands beside the parents by providing diapers to the Daycare so that babies may remain in their programs. If childcare is lost by the parent, they will no longer be able to work or attend job training and they suffer further from the loss of income. We plan to distribute between 50,000-80,000 disposable diapers through this program each year.
- Cloth Diaper Loan Program.
Cloth diapers can be very expensive, but the use of cloth diapers can save a family up to $1,000 annually for each baby in diapers. To eliminate the startup costs of these diapers, the Diaper Bank of the Ozarks will provide a cloth diaper loan. The parents are taught how to use the diapers and care for them. They are also given a mentor to assist them and offer encouragement once the loan is obtained. We plan to provide cloth diaper loans to 120-150 families each year.
- Baby Hub Program:
The DBO has a new program that will be initiated in the spring of 2018. After studying much of the information about poverty, and particularly in the city of Springfield itself, DBO will be providing outlets across Zone 1 and 2 offering not only material resources, but also educational offerings for families most needing the services but unable to easily access them when they are scattered across town and transportation is a concern. Our first Baby Hub will be opened at the Springfield Dream Center in collaboration with the Pregnancy Care Center. With 40 agencies collaborating with DBO, there will be many educational resources to pull from without the need to invent anything new. To encourage attendance and provide a safe and comfortable setting, children’s activities will happen during class time and meals and snacks will be provided.
- The Period Products Program
Providing period products through our partner agencies.
- The Brief Products Program
Providing adult incontinence supplies through our partner agencies.
What is a diaper bank?
A Diaper Bank is the storehouse supplying diapers to Partner Agencies. Partner Agencies distribute the diapers to the families in need. While the Diaper Bank supplies the needed diapers to the community, it relies on other members of the community to hold Diaper Drives and Diaper “Change” Drives, and for individuals and businesses to provide monetary and in-kind donations to sustain the supply in the store house.
What about cloth diapers?
Could using cloth diapers be the right answer for your family? It’s certainly worth considering once you understand the cost savings and how easy it can be to use cloth diapers.
We need volunteers!
Whether you are available an occasional hour, four hours a week, or more, there is a volunteer opportunity for you at the DBO. We will find the right place for you to make a difference in the lives of the babies in need in our community.