Send Cloth Around the World to Keep Babies Healthy

by Jake's Diapers, Inc.
Send Cloth Around the World to Keep Babies Healthy
Send Cloth Around the World to Keep Babies Healthy
Send Cloth Around the World to Keep Babies Healthy
Send Cloth Around the World to Keep Babies Healthy
Send Cloth Around the World to Keep Babies Healthy
Send Cloth Around the World to Keep Babies Healthy

For Jake’s, 2022 was filled with much to be proud of and excited about. We began the year by welcoming our new executive director, Scott Sawinski. We also expanded our list of partners from less than 90 to more than 200 by the end of the year (by the way, we’re up to 250 and counting!

This means that our work has been able to reach (and support) more diverse community needs, from foster care to after school programs, family needs and domestic abuse shelters, refugee work, poverty support, health programs, etc. 

In total, we surpassed ONE MILLION total products distributed in 2022 for a total of 1,053,505 products. We spent reflecting on all the work that we accomplished throughout the year, thanks to your support. 

Keeping Babies Safe, Dry, and Healthy

Through our East Wisconsin Diaper Bank, National Cloth Network and Global Cloth Network, Jake’s has distributed 554,821 diapers to partners. These diapers have supported 12,885 children and babies. 

“Parents are their child’s first and most important teacher. (From Jake’s, we use) diapers, wipes and feminine hygiene products. These items are expensive, and being able to help provide these to families allows them to spend their money on other necessities.” — Kelly Hinz of Parent Connection

Creating Equal Access to Period Product 

Our On The Dot Program provides dignity for girls and women through equality and access to period products. So far in 2022, we have distributed 129,352 period products which have supported 5,442 girls and women. 

“We are providing free period products in our bathrooms for high school students. This is very helpful to keep them in school during this time for them.” — Kelly Wick, Appleton Area School district/Appleton East High school

“Our intermediate female students now have a locker designated for period products that they can access at any time they need. The products in the locker came from Jake’s Network! We have already had students use the locker.” — Leah Zwiers,  Jefferson Elementary School, AASD 

“Children feel more confident to attend and engage with peers when they are well groomed and cared for at home!” — Mackenzie Harness, Oshkosh Area School District – Ready 4 Learning

Helping Older Adults Maintain a High Quality of Life 

One in three adults are dealing with some form of bladder control issues today, and two in three people will have incontinence during their lifetimes. There’s a social stigma around the issue, adding to the difficulty in dealing with it. In 2022, we have distributed 336,128 ACE products to partners. These products have improved the enjoyment of life for 10,143 individuals. 

“Our seniors feel that by asking for their incontinence products, they feel more secure not having to ration when they need to use them.  A lot of the seniors can’t afford what they need with how many they go through a day, so this is a huge help to them to call and get these sent to them with their meals we supply them with.” — Amanda Wiechman, ADVOCAP’s Outreach Specialist

Supporting diverse basic needs through My Neighbor and our Hope Hub

Our My Neighbor program is our most diverse basic needs program. This program was established in 2019 based on demand to provide even more basic living goods to people in need in our community, at the request of numerous partner agencies and really established its presence over the past year.  The goal of this program is to provide for other needs that community partners are serving, while creating financial savings for our partners which in turn creates a revenue stream that supports our hygiene programs.

For example, a partner could browse the Hope Hub to find items for adopt-a-family type projects, including bedding, toys, kitchenware, hygiene items and more; OR, teachers can browse and stock supplies they need for classrooms or school projects; OR pregnancy agencies can stop by and pickup items that expectant parents will need, from furnishing a nursery to stuffing a diaper bag and more. 

All items from My Neighbor and the Hope Hub are provided at sharing fees to partners – which on average cost about 25% of retail value. The sharing fees from this program also support the operations that help us provide all the hygiene products (diapers, period products and incontinence supplies) at no cost to these same partners. This is a major win for our community, partners and the people they serve.

By the Numbers

  • Total products: 1,053,505
  • Total lives: 29,594
  • Total diapers: 554,821
  • Total children + babies diapered: 12,885
  • Total period products: 129,352
  • Total girls + women served: 5,442
  • Total ACE products: 336,128
  • Total people served through ACE: 10,143
  • Total cloth diapers: 5,163
  • Total individuals served with cloth: 345
  • Total retail value saved via My Neighbor: $600,000


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Bridges United was founded in 2022 with the mission to empower individuals and communities by providing safe and inclusive environments that promote self-determination, resilience, wellness, and a sense of community using a person-centered, strengths-based, and trauma-informed approach. We believe crisis can be a catalyst for change and that it is never too late to break the cycle of hospitalization, incarceration, and homelessness.


The organization is focused on providing a safe space for anyone experiencing a crisis to seek support or resources in our homelike environment. Our shared vision for every person to be a step up toward living healthy, feeling safe and experiencing self-worth so that individuals and communities thrive made our partnership thrive from day one. 


“These items help people know we see them as more than just guests, they are worthy,” shared Bridges United Executive Director, Patrick E. regarding the core hygiene products Bridges United receives from Jake’s Network of Hope. 


Bridges United has been able to source core products like shampoo, toothpaste, and soap to provide individuals coming for support in crisis the basic hygiene products they need to feel seen, supported, and cared for. 


Thank you for your support of our programs during 2022. Your ongoing gifts continue to create amazing change for all those we partner with and serve across the globe.


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There is a saying that ‘when a child is born, a parent is born, too. No one is born an expert in childcare, it is a skill learned with time and practice. Education for new and young parents can play an essential role in the family’s success. The Family Services Parent Connection of Northeast Wisconsin (N.E.W.) is on a mission to create this for regional families.


Parent Connection partners with families to help prevent child abuse and neglect and promote school readiness. The organization’s programs aim to help parents have the tools to do this important work through the agency’s mission to protect, heal and care.


In Wisconsin, one in six children live in extreme poverty, making it hard for young families to afford basic diapering needs. Jake’s Network of Hope and Parent Connection have partnered to ensure families have the diapers and other basic needs they require for health, safety, and dignity,  


“Parents are their child’s first and most important teacher,” said Kelly of Parent Connection. “(From Jake’s, we use) diapers, wipes and feminine hygiene products. These items are expensive, and being able to help provide these to families allows them to spend their money on other necessities.”


Parent Connection is also a frequent visitor of Jake’s Hope Hub to fulfill other needs they have as an organization. What is so great about this resource center?


“The array of treasures you find!” Kelly said. “We purchase many safety proofing items and baby items at a fraction of the costs, which allows us to assist clients with other goals they may have. I also love that you can sign up online for a shopping spot.


Thank you for your support of our programs during 2022. Your ongoing gifts continue to create amazing change for all those we partner with and serve across the globe.


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Cloth Cares for Kids in Kyiv
Cloth Cares for Kids in Kyiv

Cloth diapers are offering a layer of comfort for a pair of sisters and their young children, separated from their husbands and dads as the conflict in Ukraine continues. 

Claudia Pardo is hosting the Ukrainian refugees in her Switzerland home. Some Ukranians working at the United Nations created a nonprofit to connect hosts and refugees, and when she found out she applied. 

“They are from Kyiv. They left when the bomb/war started,” Claudia wrote. “The dads wanted them to be safe.  They left and spent days/weeks moving around in Europe (Poland, Romania, Bulgaria). Once I confirmed I could host them, they came here."

The group includes the two sisters and their 3 children, all ages 2 and younger. Their husbands and parents are still in Kyiv, as men ages 18 to 60 years old are not allowed to leave Ukraine unless they have more than 4 children or have disabilities, Claudio explained.  

“They feel grateful to be here and safe, but guilty they can have peace while the rest of their family/friends are under conflict,” Claudio said, adding that the uncertainty of the conflict takes its toll, too. “The moms are always very anxious until they can have the daily call with family at home to make sure they are still alive/good.”

Claudia reached out for cloth kits from Jake’s to ease the financial burden of diapers on the group. There was a transition getting used to the new material and cloth process, but Claudia said it has already made a difference. 

“They still don’t feel comfortable wearing cloth when they go out, but are getting there bit by bit!  So far, it’s been really helpful given the high costs of diapers!” she wrote. 

As the conflict continues, its unclear how long these refugees will need to continue sheltering in Claudia’s home. She said they use Google translate to overcome language barriers, and have adjusted to the extra activity that an additional 5 people brings to one home.

“It's really difficult for them to go from having completely independent lives to feel like a burden.  The amount of times they don't want to interfere and be discreet is amazing.  One of the moms shares a queen bed with the 2 year old and the girl falls off the bed multiple times in the week (although I added a bed rail) so when I suggested to add a mattress on the floor or a toddler bed for her, she said ‘I rather be awoken by the cries of my child because she fell off the bed than because we are being bombed.”


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Diaper Need is the lack of a sufficient supply of diapers to keep a baby clean, dry, and healthy. Since there is no government assistance available for diapers, this puts a huge financial strain on low-income & homeless families with children - this was how Jake’s was founded. Our cloth diaper program is where our work began, today our cloth diaper kits provide a family with enough diapers for birth to potty training.  

But, what is the true impact of a cloth diaper kit for a family? Read the impact for a family below. 

"I have always been interested in environmentally-friendly alternatives for my family. Many of our hygiene products I make myself. Not only is it better for our planet & therefore for us, but with a limited income as a young single mama, it really helps save money. 

“I am planning on practicing elimination communication, but will be using diapers as a back-up. Since I do prefer the eco-friendly version of diapers, healthier disposable options tend to cost more than typical bulk ones and are fairly out of my budget. It makes more sense to me to gather a few good quality cloth diapers and use it throughout my daughter’s babyhood. 

“Receiving a free kit helped me immensely so that I can focus and invest my money in other important resources like a childbirth education class and other necessary tools for her growth. It gave me the sustainability, the freedom and the ability to practice and educate others from a personal experience so that they, too, can think about using cloth diapers. 

“I plan to pass down our diapers, once we no longer need them, to family or friends. Our cloth diaper kit will live a long life - unlike the disposable diapers would. Lastly, it  gives me the mindful security of knowing that I have one less bill to pay month to month."

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Organization Information

Jake's Diapers, Inc.

Location: Neenah, WI - USA
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @jakesdiapers
Project Leader:
Lyssa Schmidt
Neenah , WI United States
$2,267 raised of $25,000 goal
54 donations
$22,733 to go
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