Diaper need as a window into poverty: Chelesa & the Delta Diaper Bank in the Washington Post
delta diaper bank
Diaper Needs and Period Poverty... in the United States
Did you know diapers aren't covered by any federal government or state safety net? The Diaper Bank of the Delta gave away 350,000 diapers last year. You read that right: 350,000! Since COVID hit, they've traveled to tiny towns across over a dozen counties to reach the babies and families who need them most. Cuz if you can't afford enough diapers, you often can't afford a car either...
The Diaper Bank is one of a network of programs running out of the Delta Hub. They do big things on a very small budget, like:
Friends of Finn, in collaboration w/ Mothers' Milk Bank of Mississippi for mothers to donate breastmilk for sick babies
Clarksdale Baby University in partnership w/ Spring Initiative, to teach parenting skills
Crossroads Baby Cafe's weekly drop-in for breast feeding support from certified lactation consultants
"Nursing at the Crossroads" stations at local festivals, from Juke Joint Festival to Juneteenth. It's an enclosed tent with rocking chairs for nursing mothers, a clean & safe changing station and Tot Zone playmat with toys+books...so young parents can enjoy festivals, too!
Running the only nationally-recognized Diaper Bank in the state. The National Diaper Bank Network funded the diaper trailer that allows them to reach small communities, and helps them buy Huggies at a reduced rate. (Yes, they still have to pay $$!) The Baby2Baby partnership also helps -- they arranged a donation of 10,000 diapers from the The Honest Company!
Partnering with organizations like Too Small to Fail & Kotex U to procure supplies like period supplies and books.
Feeding families. The Community Foundation of Northwest Mississippi has supported the Diaper Bank since the beginning. Since COVID, they've increased support to help distribute diapers and food.
Starting the "It's That Time, Girl" initiative to remove shame & embarrassment, and increase access to period products.
Know what else isn't covered by any federal or state safety net? Period products. "Period poverty" in the US is real for women who don't have enough period products to meet their menstrual needs.
Moms know: children's needs come before your own. If you can barely afford diapers & baby food, you'll skip buying pads for yourself.
As founder Chelesa Presley reminds us, "it's a cost of living in poverty." That hushed need exists for women across the Delta, from mothers to shy college freshmen. At one of many events recently, It's That Time Girl hosted a period product giveaway at HBC Rust College in Holly Springs. Over 40 students came.
Support Change in Action
Donate to the Diaper Bank directly:
Email email@example.com with other ways you can help.
Share their story.
Volunteer with us every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. Book a volunteer experience at the Hub here in Clarksdale, Mississippi.
Volunteer: Experience Change in Action
We're proud to partner with the Diaper Bank of the Delta:
You can now book 2hr volunteer experiences through Shared Experiences every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. Roll up your sleeves and get ready to meet the force that is Chelesa Presley and her team... and experience real change in action.