WARREN, N.J. (CBSNewYork) — One in three families in the United States say they cannot afford enough diapers to keep their babies clean and healthy.
A New Jersey organization says things have gotten much worse because of the pandemic, but there are ways to help.READ MORE: FDA Recommends 'Pause' For Johnson & Johnson COVID Vaccine After Rare Blood Clots Reported
Tangi is a mom of six who was once homeless.
“One point in time, I was living on Ellis Avenue in Irvington,” she told CBS2’s Meg Baker.
She now lives in Newark but still needs assistance, particularly with items for her children.
Jersey-based “Moms Helping Moms” has been able to provide for her.
“I’ve been getting Pampers from them for years,” Tangi said. “Less stress for me.”
Founder Bridget Cutler started the foundation shortly after having her first child and realizing how expensive baby diapers and formula are, and reading about a mother who gave her child up for adoption because she was unable to feed him.
“I went up to my network of mom friends. I started collecting their unneeded baby supplies,” Cutler said.READ MORE: Brooklyn Woman Tests Positive For COVID After Vaccination, Experts Say Shot Minimizes Severity Of Illness
Then she realized there wasn’t a centralized state agency where a parent can get assistance for these necessities. She held the first diaper drive from her garage in Hoboken 10 years ago.
The need has increased 300% since the pandemic. In 2019, Moms Helping Moms served 30,000 families. In 2020, they served more than 100,000.
“In 2019, we distributed close to about 300,000 diapers statewide, and in 2020, we distributed 630,000,” Cutler said.
- Ask CBS2’s Dr. Max Your Vaccine Questions
- COVID Vaccine FAQ From CDC
- Vaccination Sites In New York City | Call 877-VAX-4NYC
- Track NYC Vaccinations By Zip Code
- Find A New York City Testing Site Near You
- Check NYC Testing Wait Times
- Resources: Help With Unemployment, Hunger, Mental Health & More
- Remote Learning Tools For Students And Parents At Home
- Complete Coronavirus Coverage
It’s not only about the health of children but the mental health of parents.
“These families are wrapping their kids in, you know, grocery bags. They’re dumping out diapers and putting them back on their babies,” Cutler said. “These parents suffer with, you know, anxiety and depression … so up to 10 times a day, if you don’t have a diaper, you feel like a failure as a parent.”
Moms Helping Moms partners with local food pantries and other social services to locate families in need to make sure children have the basics to start life off with.
If you would like to help Moms Helping Moms, the organization says monetary donations are the best way to give. Visit momshelpingmomsfoundation.org to donate.MORE NEWS: Road To Reopening: Newark Public Schools Welcome Students Back For In-Person Classes
CBS2’s Meg Baker contributed to this report.