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Natural Awakenings Fairfield & Southern Litchfield Counties

Hospitals and the Diaper Bank of Connecticut Join to Address Diaper Need

Beginning this fall, the Connecticut Hospital Association (CHA), the Diaper Bank of Connecticut and the Connecticut Department of Housing are launching a new statewide diaper distribution network called Diaper Connections. The Connecticut Department of Housing has provided $500,000 to fund and leverage additional resources to help jumpstart the program.

Diaper Connections will offer diaper distribution through local hospitals and established local hospital partners, to ensure supplies of diapers are available each month to families who need them. The program aims to improve the health of families by preventing problems associated with diaper need.

In addition, the program has the potential to increase parents’ ability to gain education or advance their career, thus increasing the potential for economic success for some families. A 2018 University of Connecticut study concluded that every dollar spent relieving diaper need produced an 11-fold increase in personal income for families struggling to afford diapers.  

More than one third of Connecticut families with young children struggle to afford diapers. Not surprisingly, children without enough clean, dry diapers suffer a higher incidence of urinary tract infections, diaper dermatitis and more days with diaper rash. Because childcare programs often require a full week’s supply of diapers in order for a child to attend, parents who cannot afford to buy diapers must miss school or work.

Parents and caregivers can check their eligibility for free diapers by contacting the hospital where they receive care or the Diaper Bank of Connecticut. Eligibility is based on two simple screening questions, generally based on household income, or on current participation in a safety net program such as Medicaid. There is a short application once eligibility is established.

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