hgazette.com, Haverhill, MA

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October 17, 2013

Group helps low-income families by providing diapers

(Continued)

She said that according to a study done at Yale University, low-income mothers who cannot afford diapers are more likely to report symptoms of depression and anxiety. Yale researchers published their findings in the August issue of the journal Pediatrics.

The study found that three in 10 poor mothers reported they could not afford an adequate supply of diapers.

“Many people ask about cloth and for many that is an option I fully support,” Hailson said. “However, when doing my research and talking to the professionals in many of the agencies that serve children, disposable was the need. Whether families use disposable or cloth does not matter to me, as long as the babies are clean, dry and healthy, which is the motto of the nonprofit National Diaper Bank Network.”

Although Hailson supports both types of diapering, she said that for many low-income parents, cloth is often not an option as they may not have a washing machine or transportation to a laundromat.

Last December, students at Sacred Hearts School held a drive and collected over 6,000 diapers for Hailson’s organization.

She said other organizations, including various local daycare centers have held diaper drives as well.

Hailson said the Saint Vincent de Paul Society of All Saints Conference in Haverhill is her fiscal sponsor, which allows the Anchor of Hope Diaper Bank to collect donations, while her organization’s nonprofit 501c3 status is pending with the IRS.

“Through our partner agencies, we give out about 5,000 to 6,000 diapers a month to families in need,” Hailson said. “Our organization is a strictly volunteer organization and is dependent upon donations of diapers and dollars.”

Throughout November, the Children’s Room at the public library will collect diaper donations for the Anchor of Hope Diaper Drive. People can drop off packages of new diapers, particularly in sizes 4, 5 and 6.

Anchor of Hope Diaper Bank will hold its second annual pancake breakfast fundraiser on Oct. 19 from 8 to 11 a.m. at Riverside Memorial Church, 278 Groveland St. The meal will include pancakes, bacon, coffee, tea, milk, juice and a toppings bar. Tickets are $5 in advance and $6 at the door. Admission is free to children ages 2 and under. Ticket can be reserved by calling 978-372-0335.

Visit online at www.aohdiaperbank.org.

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