HANNIBAL, MO. (WGEM) -- According to the National Diaper Bank Network the price of diapers are going up and the need is rising.
Since the start of the pandemic, distributions at local diaper banks have increased by 68%.
At Clarity Healthcare in Hannibal, parents can pick up diapers and other baby supplies from their emergency diaper bank, but with prices rising, both the diaper bank and community members are struggling to keep up.
Clarity diaper bank coordinator Cindy Epperson said the bank was started two years ago with help from a grant from Healthy Blue, a branch of Missouri Medicaid. But now they operate with the help of donations from the local community and now they’re getting less help.
"A lot of it was donations, but that was pre-COVID times, so we've taken a hard hit. We used to get donations every month from different organizations and just individuals, but they've been affected too because diaper prices have gone up, so they're not able to grab another pack or two and donate it to us, so it's put us in a bind too," Epperson said.
In addition, Epperson said they've seen more people in the community reaching out to help because they've been hit hard by the pandemic, whether they've lost a job or just can't keep up with the rising prices.
One mother using the diaper bank at Clarity said she can't budget the recent price of diapers and she's in a place where she would have had to choose between diapers or getting groceries.
Epperson said they understand the needs are here in the community and they are working to help with the rising needs.
"We see everybody, from those parents that do not have jobs to those that do but those cost of living and everything has just gone up so much that they're just really struggling to make ends meat. And frankly, we expect those diaper prices to keep increasing through September of this year," Epperson said.
Clarity said anyone who is struggling can come to the bank to pick up supplies like diapers and wipes.
There are no questions about financial or job status.
To reach out to Clarity Healthcare for more information about how to get help from the diaper bank or if you're interested in making a donation to the bank, you can call 573-603-1460 for Hannibal or (217)-222-6277 for Quincy.