“The cost of diapers for many families in Central Illinois is a real household budgeting problem and source of great stress,” said Rep. Ryan Spain (R-Peoria) standing in front of a wall of over 4,000 diapers and 6,000 wipes collected as part of his 2nd Annual Holiday Diaper Drive. “Many people don’t realize that programs like WIC and SNAP do not pay for diapers, rash creams or other infant supplies. Short of assistance through food and diaper pantries, there is practically no help available to families to help purchase diapers. This is not only an overlooked need, but a public health problem.”
Rep. Spain followed through on his promise to help those families in need on Saturday with the first round of deliveries of diapers and supplies to area pantries, including Koinonia Food Pantry in Lacon and the Henry Community Food Pantry. Over 400 diapers, over 450 wipes and several diaper rash creams were delivered to each pantry by Rep. Spain’s staff and volunteers as part of a district-wide effort to help with diaper and supply donations in time to distribute to families before Christmas.
Rep. Spain’s Holiday Diaper Drive collections ran from November 12- December 7 to help address the insufficient supply of diapers to keep infants in need clean, dry, and healthy. In total, over 4,000 diapers and over 6,000 wipes were collected for distribution to area pantries.
“The need is so great with all of these organizations that I would encourage the community to reach out and see what they can do to help further with these organizations in fulfilling their missions. In many cases, the thousands of diapers and wipes donated as part of this drive will be distributed within hours or days with additional need already in place. Donations of diapers and baby supplies are often overlooked in donations to all pantries. There is significant need for especially sizes 4, 5, and 6 diapers,” said Rep. Ryan Spain.
Children under the age of 5 comprise 13 percent of the State’s SNAP recipients and more than 25% of WIC recipients are infants. Diapers cost an average of $18 per week or $936 per year. According to the National Diaper Bank Network, low-income families report a shortage of 50 diapers per month.
The diapers and supplies collected by Rep. Spain’s office will be distributed to pantries throughout the 73rdLegislative District, which includes all or parts of Peoria, Woodford, Marshall, Stark, Bureau, and LaSalle counties.