Domtar recognizes Diaper Need Awareness Week every year during the third week in September. This week draws attention to the issue of diaper poverty in the United States.
Launched in 2012 by the National Diaper Bank Network (NDBN), Diaper Need Awareness Week encourages real talk and simple actions to ensure that all parents and caregivers have access to clean diapers and other necessities so their babies can thrive.
To mark this important initiative, the mayor of Delaware, Ohio, proclaimed the week of Sept. 21 as Diaper Need Awareness Week in the city. This proclamation is particularly special to us because our Personal Care facility that manufactures our baby diaper products is in Delaware, Ohio.
“Traditionally, we are honored to host Mayor Riggle at our Delaware facility to make the proclamation, but due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we are doing everything virtually this year,” says Craig Timm, Domtar’s regional communications manager. “As always, though, we are proud to be a part of this special occasion and the Delaware community.”
Domtar Comfort and Care Diaper Assistance Program
According to the NDBN, one in three U.S. families struggle to provide enough diapers to keep a baby or toddler clean, dry and healthy. Babies who don’t have enough clean diapers are exposed to more health risks and are less likely to be accepted at daycares, which may leave parents unable to work.
At Domtar, we acknowledge this serious problem during Diaper Need Awareness Week and throughout the year. Our Comfort and Care Diaper Assistance Program helps alleviate families’ financial and emotional stress through donations to diaper assistance organizations, such as diaper banks and care facilities.
Our Comfort and Care diaper program has been an integral part of our COVID-19 relief efforts this year. We understand that people are struggling with stay-at-home orders, lost wages and limited resources. That’s why we partnered with Good360, a global leader in product philanthropy and purposeful giving, to give diapers to families experiencing shortages due to the pandemic.
In addition to our COVID-19 relief project with Good360, we donated 250,000 diapers to the Diaper Bank of North Carolina (DBNC). Domtar’s Personal Care division calls North Carolina home, and we have been longtime supporters of the DBNC, which helps supply necessities to families in the state.
“With the pandemic, now more than ever, families are struggling to afford basic hygiene products as they deal with unemployment and stay home orders which have impacted access to support systems,” says Marcy Lemieux, vice president of finance in Domtar’s Personal Care division and serves on the board of the Diaper Bank of North Carolina. “Domtar Personal Care is committed to supporting the Diaper Bank of North Carolina who have continued to serve our communities and the increased demand for hygiene products throughout the pandemic.”
Additionally, this year we donated diapers to areas affected by social unrest and worked with CVIC in Grand Forks, North Dakota, to help provide diapers to families that have experienced domestic violence, assault and crime.
“Parents and caregivers struggling to provide enough diapers to keep their children clean, dry and healthy have shared that not being able to meet this need for their children causes them a great deal of stress and anxiety,” says Michelle Old, founder of the Diaper Bank of North Carolina. “Children, even babies, pick up on how their parents and caregivers are feeling. Infants and toddlers may be wearing a single diaper for an entire day if their families do not have enough diapers to allow for more frequent changes. Children may experience skin and urinary tract infections, cry more often due to the discomfort of wearing a soiled diaper and wake more often at night. All of this intensifies the stress that families are facing.”
You Can Help During Diaper Need Awareness Week
Are you interested in helping to address diaper poverty? Here’s how you can get involved during Diaper Need Awareness Week and all year long:
- Host a diaper drive.
- Volunteer at a local diaper bank.
- Request Diaper Need Awareness Week proclamations from elected officials.
- Engage in real talk on social media via the hashtags #EndDiaperNeed and #BasicsArentBasic.
- Make a donation to NDBN or a local diaper program.