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July 23, 2010 > Diaper Drive

Diaper Drive

Submitted By Gwen Mitchell

On July 20, the Santa Clara County Commission on the Status of Women and the County of Santa Clara Office of Women's Policy launched the "60 days of Diapers Drive" whose goal is to raise $5,000 for one year's supply of diapers for local infants and toddlers served by the Family Wellness Court.

"The clients in Family Wellness Court are working hard to be better parents, better neighbors, better members of our community," said Santa Clara County Supervisor George Shirakawa, Chair of the Board's Public Safety and Justice Committee. "Our support is crucial because their success ultimately makes our community a healthier, safer place for all our children."

All 200 families in Family Wellness Court have children up to three-years old and one of their greatest needs is diapers. A healthy infant uses 10 to12 diapers in 24 hours; a healthy toddler uses 6 to 8. Commercial Laundromats forbid cloth diapers and diaper services are not economically feasible when families struggle with other basic needs like housing and food.

"A serious gap in the safety net is that diapers aren't covered by general assistance," said Esther Peralez-Dieckmann, Director of the Office of Women's Policy. "Although people might not associate diapers with policy decisions, dirty diapers raise both health and economic concerns for court-involved families with small children. Dirty diapers are often one of the things cited in cases of child neglect."

The Commission on the Status of Women has committed to raising $5,000, essentially one year's supply of diapers (approximately 13,500 diapers) for the infants and toddlers of the Family Wellness Court. They have partnered with the Jewish Federation of Silicon Valley, the YMCA Cupertino and the Indian Community Center to collect diapers of all sizes and tax-deductible donations to the Diaper Drive 2010. A $20-donation will provide a child with a week's supply.

"These are challenging times for everyone but for those of us who can make a difference right now, every dollar helps," said Suzanne Doty, Chair of the Commission on the Status of Women. "A small donation will have a big impact for these babies. I hope others in our community will also contribute. Diaper Drive 2010 will end on September 12."

"The Jewish Federation supports programs that provide pathways out of poverty for families," added Diane Fisher, from the Jewish Federation of Silicon Valley, one of the key partners in this effort. "The Family Wellness Court is a great example of effective collaboration that truly provides hope and transformative services."

For more information, drop-off locations, how to make on-line donations or where to send a check to support the drive, call (408) 299-5152 or visit http://owp.sccgov.org.

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