There is an amazing organization that just begun that is providing low income families with cloth diapers in Richmond, VA. Hopefully it will take off and be able to expand! But they are in need of sponsors and donations. If you have any unwanted cloth diapers, this is truly great cause! Check out my Q&A with Ashley R. the founder.
Q. What inspired you to create the Cloth Diaper Project?
A. I know from personal experience that the initial costs of cloth diapering can be intimidating, and often exclude families from starting their stashes. Families who would otherwise love to cloth diaper, and enjoy the long term cost savings, are often excluded because they can't afford the initial costs. The very system that could help families save money was out of reach to them. It seemed that these families just needed a bit of help to get started and the problem would be solved. I envisioned an organization that could make a difference locally, one where we could work face-to-face with families and be available to offer help and support when those cloth diaper questions arise.
Q. What are your goals with the project?
A. We believe that every family should be able to enjoy the benefits of cloth diapers, and that none should be excluded because of the initial costs. By lending cloth diapers to families who wouldn't otherwise be able to afford the initial costs, we hope that parents have one less thing to worry about. Families can use the money that they'd normally "throw away" on disposable diapers (an average $17/week) to build their own stash, or they can simply use that money on other important necessities like groceries, rent, or medical expenses. We want to empower families to care for their families in the best way possible.
Q. Who are your sponsors?
A. Our first and major sponsor is Franklin Goose. They share our philosophy on the benefits of cloth diapers as well as the importance of serving our community. I am thrilled to be working with them on this Project! Not long after the management at Franklin Goose so graciously and willingly agreed to sponsor The Cloth Diaper Project, the staff began offering donations of cloth diapers from their personal stashes. The staff and management at Franklin Goose are incredibly generous and are a personal inspiration and encouragement to me.
Q. What can others do to help?
A. In order to supply diapers to low-income families, WE NEED DIAPERS! If you have diapers that you aren't using we will happily pass them to a family who will put them to good use! There's no better way to give your diapers a new life and make a difference! Check our out Donate page for more information on how and what to donate.
B. We also are in need of financial contributions to help us keep running.You can donate securely through our site using Paypal.
C. Spread the word! Please help us tell others about The Cloth Diaper Project! If you have a blog, put a link on your blog about The Cloth Diaper Project and tell your readers about us! (If you do, please let us know so we can tell others about your site.
D. Volunteer your time. If you have a special skill that you'd like to share, let us know. We'd love your help!
Q. How many families do you plan to help in 2011?
A. We have a really exciting year ahead of us! In 2011, we plan to help 100 families in our area with cloth diapering set up and support! We've set high goals for our first full year, but we have solid plans to work hard in order to see things come together.
Q. Why is cloth diapering so important?
A. I find myself talking about the benefits of cloth diapers to friends, pregnant women, new parents, and just about anyone who is willing to listen. They are the perfect solution for families who want a safer, more economical, and more earth-friendly choice for their babies. Cloth diapers help prevent diaper rash and don't have the nasty chemicals of disposable diapers. Dioxin (the most carcinogenic chemical listed by the EPA) is found in disposable diapers and is dangerous even at the lowest level of exposure. Sodium Polyacrylate is the chemical that form the small crystals in conventional disposable diapers that gel when wet. They can cause severe skin irritations and are extremely dangerous if ingested, even in very small quantities. These toxic chemicals lay right against your precious new baby's most sensitive areas. In addition to the health benefits for your baby, there are huge financial savings with cloth diapers. If a family invests in all new cloth diapers they will save roughly $2,000 in just 2 years of use! Plus, they can be used with siblings or passed on to others, without ending up in the landfill. Each disposable diaper bought is literally tomorrow's trash. Disposable diapers are an incredible waste of money and resources. Each year, in the U.S. alone, 7.6 billion pounds of disposable diapers are dumped in our landfills, where they will remain for hundreds of years. Plus, there is nothing cuter than a fluffy little bottom with bright colors or fun prints!
Q.How can someone apply for assistance?
A. Beginning in January, anyone who lives in our area and meets the income eligibility requirements can apply online through our website. Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis.