Yavapai diaper drive

By Daniel Roca
Staff Writer

One of the largest needs low-income families face today is not for food or clothing, but diapers for their babies. From April 10 to May 8, organizations across Yavapai County will open their doors to diaper donations in an effort to help struggling families.

“Diapers are a tremendous need,” said Claire Louge, Community Outreach Coordinator for First Things First, an Arizona-based early childhood organization that works to ensure children are healthy and ready to succeed before they enter school. “It takes a little more than $2,000 a year to keep a baby in diapers. For minimum-income families, this equates to about 10 percent of their annual income. Sixty-two percent of single moms in this county are below the poverty line,” she explained. “And there is no government assistance for diapers.”

This year, First Things First is partnering with fire stations to collect donations before distributing them to community organizations.

One such organization, the Community Pregnancy Center (CPC), a pro-life organization located on East Gurley Street, uses a system called “Earn While You Learn” to educate parents, as well as provide them with diapers. Through this program, parents attend courses like Early Childhood Development or Pregnancy and Childbirth, in return for “Mommy Money” or “Daddy Bucks,” which they can redeem for diapers at a baby store.

The Diaper Drive also accepts cloth-diaper donations, for those who would like to promote a more sustainable alternative. However, Louge explained that most lower-income families do not have access to the laundry facilities that cloth-diapers often require.

Louge emphasized the need for diapers sizes 3-6 and that “we need diapers just for babies please!”

Want to make a financial contribution? Those interested can visit www.youthcount.org to make a direct donation.

This article appeared in the April 2011 print edition of The Raven Review.
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