- Written by Stella Kabura for African Laughter
Cotton nappies and diapers have been used by mums for years. But today, there's a new inner-wear in town for tots. The non-disposable Eco-diapers designers claim that they not only reduce the amount of trash in land fills and the odour of diaper pail in homes but offer a baby comfort at the same time ease a working mum's schedule.
“They are reusable, environmental friendly, less costly,” explains Flossy from GG Reusable Eco-diapers organisation.
Yet, according to the organisation, although less than five percent of homes in Kenya use disposable diapers, disposable diapers form 90 per cent of garbage in landfills as they are non biodegradable. But the newly designed diaper, reduces the need for disposal and infections.
While the first disposable diaper was introduced over five centuries ago, the Kenya based GG Reusable Eco-diapers organisation recently in 2011 came up with an idea to create an environmental friendly baby diaper for mums in Kenya perhaps due to raising concerns of the pollution problem and health challenges.
Researchers say that the synthetic fibre makes babies sweat, increasing the risk of bacterial contamination due to increased heat adding that at least 107 different types of bacteria can be attracted to diapers of which, can eventually lead to nappy rush.
Nevertheless, the Eco-diaper which is unscented and chemical free, comes with a wet bag for dirty diapers, a reusable fine cotton insert of which, designers recommend giving it a pre-wash at least once with warm water after purchase. For absorbency purposes, reusable diapers inserts are washed with one tablespoon of detergent safe on a child's skin, to remove oils and wax from cotton and bamboo that prevents liquids from absorbing into the diaper and insert.
After using the diaper for the first time, a child's waste is first separated from the diaper and flushed away in the toilet to prevent contamination. Afterwards, the Eco-diaper stored in a bag, is washed, dried and used again. However, when a baby soils the diaper designers recommend changing the entire diaper and washing it to prevent odour but if a baby urinates, you'd only need to change the insert when full.
A new born can go through four diapers and 12 inserts a day. Designers recommend at least eight diapers to wash and use, with no need to purchase more diapers. One diaper is worth Sh750 while the ordinary disposable diaper is worth between Sh150 to Sh1,500 depending on the size and number. However, the organisation argues that one can spend Sh150,000 on disposable diapers alone in two years.