I offer cloth diapering education as a part of my doula services, and I wanted to know opinions of others, esp those who have either had someone educate them or educated someone else. Do you think it is beneficial/necessary for me to have a sample of different cloth diapers, or are printouts with info enough? I don't know if printouts really capture the ease of cloth diapering, but at the same time, cloth diapers are not cheap, and I don't know if it would be worth the investment, esp if I am not actually USING the cloth diapers for anything other than educational purposes.
Note: I am not having actual classes on cloth diapering, it is just something i bring up during prenatal visits, and if the parents are interested, I show them the printouts.
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I would try to get at least a prefold and a pocket diaper to show parents along with the more detailed handouts. You could find a cloth diaper retailer (with a wide selection of diaper styles) that you like and ask them if they would be willing to provide these as samples since you will be showing many expectant parents cloth diapers. You could give their info card out along with the printouts, especially if it's a company you support. Maybe they would even offer a discount for people you refer? This way you may be able to help new parents with cloth and support a small, family based company at the same time. If you don't like that idea, you can always check out diaperswappers.com to purchase gently used diapers, or even worn out ones in play condition, at a good price or sometimes even free for shipping.
Amy - married to my best friend and mom to DS born September, 2011.
I agree it would be beneficial to have actual cloth diapers to show new parents. A handout just isn't the same as being able to touch and see a cloth diaper. I likely would not have tried cloth diapering except a few of my IRL friends were able to show me their diapers and how they used them. Without seeing how easy it was, I may have been persuaded by everyone else who said cloth diapering was IMPOSSIBLE and STUPID when sposies are so readily available and easy.
I got most of my diapers from ebay for very little money. I have pockets, AIO, fitteds, prefolds, covers and some woolies I've knit myself. I've gotten everything for under $100, and that's an entire stash, that can last 2-3 days with a 2 month old. A few sample diapers really shouldn't be too big of an investment if you shop around.
Agreed, samples are a good idea. You don't need every brand but one of each style would be nice. Several retailers have sampler packages or asking for a donation along with some business cards is also a great idea.
Another vote for having some samples of the various kinds. It really really helps to be able to see and feel the cloth in helping a parent decide! I used disposables with my first son many years ago, and cloth with my second son and I basically had to do tons of internet research to educate myself on the different types, etc. I mean, I had tons of fun doing it but it would have been nice to have someone to say "This is this, that is that." :)
I teach a Cloth Diapering 101 class weekly, and do have samples of each type of diaper and accessory to pass around the class. From the chitchat before the class, many people come to the class because all the information online is mind-boggling, and they just need to see and touch the different types of diapers for it to all make sense. After the class, they confirm that "seeing everything and hearing from someone who's BTDT" made everything make sense.
If you're not actually *teaching* a class or using cloth diapers- I'd say, pick up a prefold, cover, and pocket diaper (and snappi, if possible) on craigslist. You can explain prefolds and covers, trifolding, using a snappi, using a pocket, the basic idea of an AIO, how to resize a OS diaper, snaps vs velcro, etc with just those "props". (My demonstration "kit" also includes different sizes of prefolds, a fitted, 2 kinds of AIOs, hemp doubler, hybrid system accessories, fleece & disposable liners, and a diaper sprayer- but all that stuff is "extra")
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