This post is part of Cloth Diapering Bloggers’ and Dirty Diaper Laundry’s Cloth Diaper Carnival VIII: Cloth Diaper Awareness. Please visit the other bloggers participating by following the links at the end of the post at Dirty Diaper Laundry.
Since I first received the email asking me to participate in this blogging carnival, my mind has been swirling with ideas. What can I do to spread awareness about cloth diapers? And with the opening of my Doable Diapers online shop, I have been pondering the spread of cloth diapers as well.
I have a couple of ideas, though I’m sure they are not so creative as others may come up with! My first idea is specific to the region where I live. In June we relocated to Brooklyn, New York. I love many things about the Big City. One of those things is the public transportation system. Every day thousands and thousands of people flood into subway stations to get from point A to point B. My idea is to produce a pamphlet explaining the modern cloth diaper, and then stand at the entrance to a major subway station and hand them to people. Pregnant women. Families with children. Grandparents.
I have already begun working on this project. The brochure will explain the three major benefits of cloth diapers – better for your baby, better for your budget, and better for your environment. There will be pictures, so that no one can mistake modern cloth diapers for “your grandma’s cloth diapers.”
As we learn more about life in New York City, we have come to realize a couple of things. First, many people in my neighborhood in Brooklyn do not have wash machines. For them, cloth diapers will be slightly more inconvenient with the trek to the laundry mat twice a week and the added cost to wash them. But, I think it can still be done. I feel extremely blessed that God gave us an apartment with a washing machine and clothesline, but I was prepared to take my cloth to the laundry mat if necessary.
It is my husband’s idea that we go to a subway station near Central Park. People in Manhattan are a little more likely to be able to afford a place with a washing machine, and can probably afford to buy their initial stash easier also. I am hoping to hand out my brochure by the end of the week!
The second idea may already have been done by someone. My mother-in-law visited for the weekend, and every time we changed Elaine’s diaper she wanted to come and watch. While I was busy preparing supper, I asked her to change the baby. She got it right – and it was a diaper with snap closures! She even picked a color to match Elaine’s outfit!
Mom kept saying that there should be a video so that people can understand just how easy it is to cloth diaper. Now perhaps there already is one. I am not good with editing videos – I am clueless as to where to begin. And I am new fan of Dirty Diaper Laundry, so perhaps she already has a video like this. But if we could demonstrate the ease of using cloth diapers, and network, blog, tweet, etc. to get it out there in a big push, people would see the modern cloth diaper. And maybe they would even consider using cloth themselves.
A third idea involves a lay away system of sorts. I was given a baby shower, and I registered for cloth diapers. And I have won several in giveaways and using reward points. So I didn’t really have a large amount to purchase up front in order to begin using cloth diapers. But I know some people would consider it, but there is no way they can afford the $500 or so to get going with a complete stash. Even starting with prefolds can be a strain on an already tight budget. What if there was a payment plan or layaway program to allow people to pay for their cloth diapers week by week, but they could start using the products now? Then they won’t have to use disposables part-time, or wash every day, etc. I know this would help out the lower income families. Buying a stash at $500 (even if it could save me $3000) would be hard, but squeezing $20 out of every paycheck sounds more feasible.
So, there you have it. My ideas for raising cloth diaper awareness.