Opportunity - Wellness

Diaper Need at the Infant Welfare Society

The Angel Harvey Infant Welfare Society of Chicago has been serving communities in Chicago for more than 100 years. In 1908, the organization was founded in response to high rates of infant mortality in the Chicagoland area. It began as a “milk station,” where babies could be weighed and served clean, fresh, pasteurized milk. Since that time, the organization has evolved into a full service, primary preventative care location for all ages.

The hospital now provides pediatric, prenatal, adult, and dental care, as well as counseling and specialty services for children with disabilities. Beneficiaries of this service often come from under-supported or poverty-level homes. When families are struggling financially, these health and wellness services often take a back seat to other pressing needs, like food and rent.

Michelle Di Benedetto, Vice President of Institutional Advancement, recently gave us a tour of the facilities and highlighted some of the initiatives which set IWS apart.

One of those initiatives is called the “CHAT” Program, which stands for Child-centered Health & Advanced Therapies. The program “provides bilingual developmental and behavioral health services to children at risk for problems with their overall development, or who have been identified with developmental delays.” It is one of the many ways IWS supports an evolving understanding of health and wellness needs within their community.

Currently, teams across the Chicagoland area have partnered with the Good Athlete Project to support a quiet need of the organization: diaper need. The “diaper need” dilemma is worse than one might think. For parents who can’t afford new diapers, kids can stay is wet and soiled diapers for an unsafe amount of time. Disposable diapers are sometimes rinsed and reused, unfortunately resulting in a higher risk of rashes and urinary-tract infections.

Further, a Yale University study revealed that low-income mothers who experience diaper need are more likely to develop depression. This unfortunate dilemma impacts the entire family.

This spring, the Good Athlete Project identified a goal of raising 10,000 diapers for families in need. That number has been met and is still climbing!

Keep an eye out for more updates on the 2021 Diaper Drive, as well as a Podcast with Michelle Di Benedetto.

Interested in supporting the cause? Donate HERE.

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