Flats & Handwashing Challenge 2012 - WHY?

This year I will be participating in the Dirty Diaper Laundry flats and handwashing challenge, a week of using flats (single layer cloth diapers) and covers.. and washing them all by hand.

Why would anyone ever sign up for that??!??!

This is a reality for some families, diapers are expensive. I was spending $50 per month on diapers.  Disposable wipes were an additional $10 per month.  I was spending as much on diapers and wipes as I was spending on food (not even good food because I needed to save the money for diapers).  I don't have disposable income, and well, I really was tossing $60 a month in the trash.  These numbers can be even higher, especially for families in cities or shopping on a limited income, so buying in bulk isn't possible. I decided to use cloth because it made sense financially, but the $100-300 start up can be more than most struggling families can spare.  I was lucky to get some support from my family and friends, but others are forced to make it work the hard way.

I have chosen to take this challenge to help spread the awareness that diaper need is an issue.  I will share how even the most simple materials can be used to diaper a child, freeing us from the financial obligations of purchasing diapers.  I will not be purchasing anything for this challenge.  I have some cotton birdseye flats, some old flannel receiving blankets and tee shirts.  I will use wool covers I made from thrift shop sweaters and waterproof covers made by other moms.  I will continue to use cloth wipes I made from cut up shirts.  All the laundry will be washed by hand and hung to dry. I will not be using any expensive specialty detergents.

I will make this work, because there are no government funded programs to help babies in need of diapers, so we really do need to do this on our own.

Want to help without all of the mess?

You can sign a petition to get cloth diapers or cloth diaper education covered by WIC- a government funded program that assists low income families by supplying food and other baby needs but not diapers. Sign it!

Or sign this petition to show support for the DIAPER ACT (H R 3134) that could help get more babies access to diapers (cloth and disposable).  Sign it!

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