Diaper Need Awareness Week

United Way of Southwest Wyoming Community Diaper Bank kicks off its 3rd annual “Diaper Need Awareness Week”, running September 25th– October 1st, 2017. Proclamations were signed by Green River Mayor, Pete Rust; Rock Springs Mayor, Carl Demshar and Wyoming State Governor, Matt Mead.

Diaper need is the lack of a sufficient supply of diapers to keep an infant or toddler clean, dry and healthy. Nationally, 1 in 3 low-income families report struggling with diaper need.

United Way of Southwest Wyoming Community Diaper Bank in collaboration with the National Diaper Bank Network helps address diaper need by collecting and storing diapers that are then distributed to families experiencing financial hardship. Through a partnership with the Foodbank of Sweetwater County, every child can receive one packet of diapers on distribution days in both Green River and Rock Springs.

Mayor Carl Demshar presented the Diaper Need Awareness Week Proclamation to Richno, Community Impact Coordinator from United Way of Southwest Wyoming, with City of Rock Springs Councilman, Tim Savage.

Diaper Need Awareness Week recognizes that small things, diapers, affect big things, including a family’s physical, mental and economic wellbeing.

For families in need, diaper banks frequently are the only resources available to help moms, dads, grandparents, and caregivers obtain clean diapers needed to keep a child healthy.

United Way of Southwest Wyoming is calling on the community to work together– individuals, diaper banks, faith-based institutions, service providers, businesses, organizations and elected officials – together, can get diapers to all babies in need.

Mayor Pete Rust presented the Diaper Need Awareness Week Proclamation to Shelley Richno, Community Impact Coordinator from United Way of Southwest Wyoming.

Many people are unaware that the only government assistance program that can be used for diapers is TANF, but TANF also has to be used to pay for rent, utilities including heat, electric and water, clothing, transportation and other basic needs. “For some families that means less food on the table, bills that are unpaid or even re-using old diapers,” states Shelley Richno, Community Impact Coordinator, United Way of Southwest Wyoming, “you can help end diaper need by donating dollars, diapers or your time. One way to donate your time is by hosting a diaper bank party where you ask that in lieu of presents your guest bring packages of diapers. The majority of our diapers come from bulk purchases with donated funds.”  

In Wyoming, 17% of children under age 18 are infants and toddlers and 37% of Wyoming children live in low-income families.  Most working parents rely on child care and most child care facilities require parents to provide disposable diapers for their child. Without child care, parents can’t work or attend school. A parent using cloth diapers cannot wash those diapers at the local laundry mats.

Getting Involved

Individuals and organizations can get involved in Diaper Need Awareness Week in the following ways:

  • Donate to a Diaper Bank – United Way of Southwest Wyoming Community Diaper Bank. Drop off boxes in Green River are at: Green River Chamber of Commerce, Sweetwater County Library and Golden Hours Senior Center. Rock Springs drop off locations are: Rock Springs Chamber of Commerce, White Mountain and Rock Springs Libraries, Young at Heart Senior Center, RSNB Bank branch locations, Rocky Mountain Bank, and the United Way office.
  • Use #DIAPERNEED or in Social Media – Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and other social platforms – share your experiences, and raise online awareness of diaper need by using the hashtag #DIAPERNEED.
  • Host a Diaper Drive – hold a diaper drive to benefit our local community. If you need help in starting a drive contact the United Way Office.

Last year 53,952 diapers were distributed in Sweetwater County. You can help continue to close that gap.

For information, contact Richno at United Way 362-5003.