Waste Awareness Wales encourages parents to get real
As plans for this year’s Real Nappy Week get underway, Waste Awareness Wales is encouraging Welsh parents to join the growing numbers using ‘real’ cloth nappies on their baby.
Real Nappy Week is an annual event which is taking place this year between April 16th and 22nd. The event is supported by Waste Awareness Wales and will see local authorities joining with real nappy retailers to show parents how reusable nappies can save them over £500 as well as reduce waste.
Throughout the week local authorities will be holding advice sessions to give parents the opportunity to find out more about the different types of real nappy available and information on the benefits of using them. Many local authorities will also be giving out samples to parents wanting to give real nappies a try.
Georgina Taubman, Waste Reduction Office for Waste Awareness Wales, said: "In a two and a half year period a baby will use around 5,000 nappies, which costs parents roughly £800. If you choose real nappies you can get everything you need online for as little as £80, and even after adding £1 a week for an extra load of washing you’ll still be saving over £500.
"In addition to this, real nappies are a great way to reduce the amount of waste we produce. Five thousand nappies equate to 156 black bags and weigh approximately the same as a family car. All this waste goes straight to landfill where it will take 300 years to decompose, releasing harmful methane gas in the process. As well as the disposable nappies themselves, parents need to consider the plastic packaging they come in and disposable nappy bags which are essentially bought just to be thrown away.
"Real nappies have come a long way since simple terry squares were the only kind on the market. They are very easy to use and are now available in many different styles and designs from a range of online retailers as well as certain high street stores. We’re encouraging parents to take this opportunity to try real nappies and see the advantages for themselves."
Tracy Mainwaring, 39 from Llandybie, uses real nappies on her eight-week old triplets, Matt, Rhys and Jack. Tracy said: "We were expecting the triplets to be very little as they were born prematurely so we started them off on disposable nappies. Luckily they were all really good weights so we were able start using real nappies almost straight away, which was great because when using disposables we were filling an entire black bag every two days.
"Real nappies are now very easy to use. People think that they’re difficult to fold and you have to boil wash them but it’s not like that at all. They’re shaped just like disposable nappies but with Velcro or poppers to fasten them. All I do is put them in a wash bag and they go straight in the washing machine, it’s as easy as that."
Natalie Aylott from Hendy, Llanelli, uses real nappies on her little boy and far prefers them to disposables. Natalie said: "As well as the cost and environmental benefits, we’ve actually found that real nappies are much dryer. We used disposable nappies on our first child and had far more problems with leakage than we are when using real nappies this time around.
"We’ve only had to do one extra load of washing a week and even if the weather isn’t great the covers are very light so they don’t take long to dry and we’ve always got spare inserts. We’re also using machine washable baby wipes instead of disposable ones and have saved a considerable amount of money as a result."
Real Nappy Week events:
16th April - Parenting advice session organised by Neath Port Talbot Council
xxxxxxxxx- Information session at Ystrad Mynach Hospital, Hengoed from 9.00 – 10.30am
xxxxxxxxx- Information session at Withybush General Hospital Ante-Natal Clinic,
xxxxxxxxxxPembrokeshire at 12.30am
18th April - Information session at White Rose Medical Centre, New Tredegar from 12.30 – 2.30pm
21st April - Information session at Merlin's Walk in Carmarthen town centre from 10am - 4pm
xxxxxxxxx- Great Cloth Diaper Change event at Wesley Methodist Church, John Street,
xxxxxxxxxxCarmarthen from 4.30pm (www.greatclothdiaperchange.com)
Real Facts on Real Nappies
- In Wales an estimated 200 million disposable nappies are thrown away each year – 400 nappies every minute
- A potty trained baby will have got through around 4,000 to 6,000 nappies
- Using real nappies can be up to half the cost of disposables – and they can be reused with subsequent children to save even more
- Families with one baby could cut their waste in half by choosing to use real nappies
- One baby’s disposable nappies from its ‘nappy years’ will fill around 156 black rubbish bags