It’s no secret that having a child is one of the most expensive endeavors one can undertake—especially during the first few years of your child’s life! From clothing to formula to baby toys and, of course, to food, the cost of raising a child can be more than many parents were originally bargaining for. In fact, some sources say that the cost of raising a child in their first year alone can range anywhere from $20,000-$50,000.
Diapers in particular can be a struggle to maintain a budget for—especially for single mothers. According to a study done by the American Academy of Pediatrics, it was found that one in three mothers in the United States say that they need more diapers than they can actually afford.
For most, however, there is no way around having to shell out for these expenses. But if you’re a new parent and find yourself struggling to afford diapers, all hope is not lost! There are resources at your disposal that you can utilize to help you cover the costs.
In this article, we’ll explore 7 different options you have to help you keep your baby’s bottom covered!
Table of Contents
- The Programs
- The National Diaper Bank Network
- United Way’s 211
- The Doctor’s Office
- Food Pantries
- Social Services
- Diaper Samples
The following is a list of programs and resources available that may help you get diapers cheaply, and—in some instances—completely for free!
- National Diaper Bank Network
- United Way’s 211
- Your Doctor’s Office
- Food pantries
- Social services
- Diaper Samples
Now that we have a better overview of where you can find some help, let’s break these options
down further to see which may be the best fit for you!
The National Diaper Bank Network
The National Diaper Bank Network is a non-profit organization that distributes free diapers to low-income families. Their network has more than 225 members across all 50 states, plus Washington DC and Puerto Rico and they help more than 280,000 children per month maintain access to diapers!
To get started, all you need to do is check this directory to find the member located closest to you! You can also typically use your smartphone to search for “free diapers near me” to find the provider closest to you, as well as locate other resources that may be available to you in your community.
United Way’s 211
211 is “the most comprehensive source of information about local resources and services in the country.” They have operators working around the country 24/7 to help people gain access to many local resources and services to address a variety of basic needs like housing, food, transportation, and healthcare.
If you need diapers and are in dire straits, simply pick up your cell phone and dial 211 to speak with a representative and ask for “baby essentials” or “basic need items” to get connected with local resources available in your area.
If phone calls aren’t really your thing, you can also use their online database to search their resources on your own. Simply navigate to their website and click “Your Local 211” to get started.
The Doctor’s Office
Sometimes help can be found right in your own backyard! Next time you take your baby to the doctor, ask your pediatrician about free diaper samples or about programs they may know about to help you find cheap (or free!) diapers in your area.
You can also find help by calling around to local pediatric or women’s hospitals. Click here to search for and find specific doctors in your area!
Not only great for people that are searching for access to food, local food pantries are also a wonderful resource for finding free diapers and baby wipes! Many people donate opened packs of diapers that their baby has outgrown.
Find your local food pantry by clicking here.
Many churches and other religious organizations host annual drives for diapers and other baby items, with many even offering support to pregnant moms and mothers who have children under one year old—regardless of their income!
Your local social services office can also help you out if you’re having trouble maintaining access to diapers! Each city and county typically have their own offices which keep an up to date record of local programs to help parents who are in need.
If you meet certain eligibility requirements, you may also be able to apply for financial assistance like the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, or TANF benefits, to get extra money to help buy diapers and other baby items.
While these benefits can’t be used to buy diapers themselves, utilizing these programs can help free up money that would have otherwise been spent on food to help cover the costs of such items.
To get started, find your local social services office by clicking here.
Did you know that many diaper companies will send you free samples of their product? All you need to do is ask by contacting their customer service departments!
The following brands offer this service in the hopes that you’ll like their diapers and want to become a loyal customer:
There is no shame in looking for help when you need it, especially when it comes to caring for your child! It takes a village, after all. While things may be difficult at times, there are always resources available to you for help—and truthfully this article only scratches the surface.
There are other options as well, such as utilizing certain rewards programs and even special discounts like this one from Amazon, but these routes may be less accessible to parents that are already struggling financially.
If nothing else, hopefully the options listed here can at least help get you pointed in the right direction!