The Importance of United Way’s Diaper Bank
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United Way of Greater Milwaukee & Waukesha County

The Importance of United Way’s Diaper Bank

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Volunteers repack diapers at our Diaper Bank

September 5, 2023

United Way’s Diaper Bank has served thousands of families so far. With the diaper need in our community growing, this important work isn’t done yet.

Since opening in May of 2021, United Way’s Diaper Bank has hit many milestones and has served thousands of families in our four-county area. We couldn’t have done this without the help from local organizations, businesses, and our community who donate their time, effort, and money to help our Diaper Bank succeed.

Diaper Need StatThe need for diapers has grown considerably since 2010, with 33% of families reporting diaper need at that time. Today, that number has grown to 47%, according to The NDBN Diaper Check 2023: Diaper Insecurity among U.S. Children and Families. Families experiencing diaper need cannot afford a supply of diapers adequate for changing at healthy intervals.

Nearly 200,000 Wisconsinites are under the age of 3, and each requires an average of 200 diaper changes per month. A staggering 40% of these families earn less than 200% of the federal poverty level. These families are at the greatest risk of suffering the effects of diaper need because many families can’t afford diapers.

The basic need for diapers can have a devastating impact on families. Without an adequate supply of diapers, parents and caregivers may be forced to make difficult decisions: forego housing, food, and medical expenses or delay diaper changes which increases their child’s risk for diaper rash, urinary tract infections, and other infections. It becomes a cycle that some parents and caregivers must face daily, especially as 57% of parents nationally, who are experiencing diaper need, report missing four days of work each month. They simply cannot afford enough diapers to send with their child to childcare. Diaper Need Stat

United Way of Greater Milwaukee & Waukesha County partners with key nonprofits in our community, called Diaper Hubs, to help get diapers into the hands of individuals and families in need. We are dedicated to fourteen hubs in our community, and we’re proud to additionally work with over 32 agencies and organizations to serve families in Milwaukee, Waukesha, Ozaukee, and Washington counties.

United Way and our fourteen Diaper Hubs serve approximately 300 children per month, but with further community support, we can double or even triple the amount of children and their families that we can help.

Through our Diaper Bank, we welcome volunteers to participate in diaper repack events, which help us get ready-to-go packs of diapers to these hubs and organizations to distribute in the community. These volunteer activities serve a great purpose and additionally allow individuals and teams to give back in a fun, fulfilling way. 

There are still thousands more families that we want to help, and we can’t do it alone. Your support helps families gain financial flexibility to focus income on housing, food, and other essential items. Run a diaper drive, participate in a diaper repack volunteer event, or make a donation.


You can learn more, sign up, or donate to the Diaper Bank here.

United Way Diaper Bank stats



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