For children experiencing homelessness, having the basics can change everything.
We live in Seattle, home to some of the world’s richest and poorest— a place where the rate of people experiencing homelessness is the third-largest in the United States behind Los Angeles and New York.* To make matters worse, parents express they are struggling to meet the basic needs of their children. Here are the facts:
- Per Seattle / King County Point-In-Time Count, there are a total of 12,112 individuals experiencing homelessness in Seattle/King County on January 26, 2018.
- 2,683 are individuals in families with children experiencing homelessness in King and Snohomish counties.
- Infants require up to 12 diapers per day, toddlers about 8.
- Disposable diapers can cost $70 to $80 per month per baby.
- No state or federal child safety-net program provides support specifically for the purchase of diapers.
As rents spike and access to affordable housing becomes increasingly difficult, the number of families with children living in their cars, tent cities, encampments, and shelters is increasing as well. Families in survival mode, are having to decide should they’re paycheck go toward the cost of transportation to get to work, for food to feed their family, for a motel stay or to pay for a month’s worth of diapers to keep their baby clean and happy.
How Do We Tackle the Basic Needs Gap?
As Seattle tries to tackle the problem of homelessness on nearly every level, we believe in keeping it simple. A simple solution focused on delivering basic necessities can literally change everything.
Given the barriers that make it difficult to access the basics— including lack of transportation, capital, cell phone service, and a waitlist and referral process—our ability to be a low barrier and direct service makes us unique. We cut through the bureaucracy within 48 hours and will always prioritize the needs of the child.
When families are able to meet the basic needs of their children, they feel a sense of self-worth and are better able to nurture their children emotionally, economically, and socially; more importantly, learning to overcome their situation of homelessness.
National Diaper Bank. Retrieved from URL https://nationaldiaperbanknetwork.org/diaper-need-facts/
Coleman, V. (2017, December 7). King County homeless population third-largest in