By: Luis Rivera, MSW
Diapers are an incredible expense for families and many have a tough time affording the amount needed to keep their children clean and dry. An important new initiative addresses diaper insecurity and Connecticut Children’s is excited to be a partner in it to help ensure families have the supplies they need for their little ones.
Connecticut Children’s joined the Connecticut Hospital Association, the Diaper Bank of Connecticut, and hospitals around the state in the Diaper Connections program. The initiative is a statewide effort to address diaper insecurity across Connecticut.
Connecticut Children’s Office for Community Child Health identified the Diaper Connections program as a great resource to help meet a great need for Hartford families. As Community Relations Manager for Connecticut Children’s and the Community Action Pillar Lead for Connecticut Children’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Framework, our leadership approached me to help leverage my community partnerships to increase equity for the Hartford community. I reached out to the Salvation Army and worked out an agreement to establish Diaper Connections distribution sites at their locations in North and South Hartford. Earlier this month, those sites began distributing diapers to eligible families, with each one receiving up to 100 diapers per child per month.
We are now encouraging Connecticut Children’s physicians, social workers, care coordinators and other providers to refer families in need to the following Salvation Army locations. Families can also reach out on their own.
Diaper Connections in North Hartford:
Rosa Pagan, 100 Nelson Street, Hartford, Connecticut, 860.543.8419 ext. 102
Diaper Connections in South Hartford:
Patricia Arboleda, 217 Washington Avenue, Hartford, Connecticut, 860.543.8413
The Diaper Connections program is funded through a Community Development Block Grant and is administered through the Connecticut Department of Housing. After contacting the Salvation Army, interested families will need to fill out an application. The Salvation Army will screen them for eligibility, which is determined by family income. Those qualifying for the following services are automatically eligible:
- Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)
- Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF)
- Temporary Family Assistance Program (TFA)
- Women, Infants and Children Supplemental Nutrition Program (WIC)
- Housing support
- Childcare assistance
The Diaper Connections program will provide peace of mind for Hartford families that are concerned about not being able to afford the diapers their children need. In addition, the program will help to keep children in fresh diapers, which is important to prevent health issues for children. I am excited that Connecticut Children’s is able to partner with the Connecticut Hospital Association, the Diaper Bank of Connecticut, and the Salvation Army to provide this great resource for the families that need this the most.
Read additional article on the Advancing Kids Blog related to diversity, equity and inclusion.
Luis Rivera is Connecticut Children’s Community Relations Manager.