The New Haven Diaper Bank Helps Families in Need
For more than a decade, the New Haven Diaper Bank has helped lead a national movement to fill a hole in the safety net and expand society’s definition of basic human needs.
While diapers are one of the biggest expenses for families with infants, there are no federal or state public assistance programs that cover them. The New Haven Diaper Bank was started in 2004 to fill the gap.
With support from The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven and other funders, the diaper bank has grown, now distributing 20 million diapers annually to 60 community partners. The diaper bank also has a larger mission of advocating for a public policy that recognizes diapers as a basic human need that should be covered by social programs.
In addition to the physical health problems of dermatitis and urinary tract infections in children with infrequent diaper changes, a Yale Study has established a link between diaper need and depression in mothers. Children raised by parents under high levels of stress or depression are likely to act out with behavioral and emotional problems.
A diaper shortage also impacts a mother’s ability to return to work because most childcare care centers will not accept a baby without a supply of diapers.
“We’re asking moms to go back to work. But that won’t happen if they don’t have enough diapers,” says New Haven Diaper Bank Executive Director Janet Stolfi Alfano.
Read The Community Foundation’s Info Brief: Diapers Are a Basic Need.
For more information about the New Haven Diaper Bank, visit its profile on giveGreater.org.
Did you know?
An adequate supply of diapers can cost $100 per month for one child. Source: The New Haven Diaper Bank.
This story is part of the Inspiration Monday story series produced by The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven.