While people are buying out toilet paper, St. Louis area families are experiencing a new scarcity as a result of COVID-19: diaper shortages. According to the St. Louis Area Diaper Bank, thousands are now experiencing this unique need. As a result, the St. Louis Area Diaper Bank and local libraries are uniting to offer this valuable resource at drive-thru emergency stations.
The following locations are currently open:
- Florissant Valley Branch at 195 New Florissant Road
- Lewis & Clark Branch at 9909 Lewis-Clark Blvd.
- Natural Bridge Branch at 7606 Natural Bridge Road
- Weber Road Branch at 4444 Weber Road
The St. Louis Area Diaper Bank “streamlines the collection and distribution of diapers to low-income families in the St. Louis region,” according to the organization’s website, but that need has amplified in light of the public health crisis. On average, the diaper bank distributes 200,000 diapers a month. That distribution rate has increased to 500,000 diapers in the month of April alone. As the pandemic continues, those needs could increase.
Operating as the city’s only diaper reserve, the St. Louis Area Diaper Bank provides an essential service that many consider a vital component to maintaining basic health with dignity. To meet this high need, the nonprofit is partnering with others to access and proliferate important resources.
Operation Food Search, which aims to end hunger within the region, will deliver free meals to those in need through drive-thru locations on Monday, Wednesday and Friday, from 10 a.m. to noon. These pick-up points, found at slcl.org/drive-thru-meals, cover more ground at nine library locations and will help St. Louis Area Diaper Bank to share its supplies with a wider community.
The Saint Louis Alliance for Period Supplies will also partner with St. Louis Area Diaper Bank by supplying period provisions every Friday at the four primary library locations. The Florissant Valley, Lewis & Clark, Natural Bridge and Weber Road branches also accept donations of diapers and period products.
Donations are currently only accepted in unopened packages, which may be dropped off during hours of operation at each drive-thru location. In an effort to protect staff and volunteers, as well as those receiving donations, the organization has set up procedures that include rigorous sanitizing and social distancing measures. Financial donations may be made stldiaperbank.org/donate or through Amazon Smile.
St. Louis Area Diaper Bank, 6141 Etzel Ave., St. Louis, 314-624-0888, stldiaperbank.org/covid19
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