Alice Walker talking reusable nappies to parents at the University Hospital Lewisham Pregnancy Evening 

At what point would you have liked to have been introduced to Real Nappies for London?

During pregnancy we prepare ourselves for a life changing event, be it our first or second-time around, we do our best juggling everyday life, our/our partners changing bodies and prepare for the big arrival. Whether it be prepping from the 12-week scan, or (like myself) leaving it to the last few months, we will all do a lot of research during pregnancy – how can I save money, be environmentally friendly, how to breastfeed or bottle feed, which formula is best, best cot, best stroller, best nappy etc … the list goes on. 

When I first heard about reusable nappies, I was at my 20 week midwife antenatal appointment and remember feeling overwhelmed with how quickly my body and bump was changing and growing. My midwife handed me 20+ different vouchers, leaflets and pamphlets which I glanced over on the bus journey home but soon forgot about later on. At 8 months, my partner and I attended a one-day parenting class at my local hospital. Initially, I had already done some research about reusable nappies so understood a little, but not quite there yet to purchase any. So when the midwife spoke about them during the nappy changing section of the lesson, I felt happy and intrigued that they were being mentioned, but disappointed that it was not elaborated on enough – the product itself was not shown for us to see and touch, unlike the exposure disposable nappies get.

Looking back, I think my partner and I would have benefited on having a more detailed talk on the different types of reusable nappies and how to use them. This could have been done by either the midwife team themselves, or a dedicated reusable nappy advocate, i.e – Real Nappies for London, Nappy Network/Library, or even a parent, who attends the class briefly to provide impartial knowledge and information on how to use, where to buy/hire reusable nappies and the encouragement to get started. 

My experience may be similar to others, or completely different; we’re on a fact finding mission to understand how we can benefit parents more. So here’s my question to you, at what point would you have liked to have been introduced to Real Nappies for London? Not just as a voucher incentive scheme but as an educator and someone you could turn to for reusable nappy information and advice. We would love to hear your thoughts and greatly appreciate your time to complete our short survey [Survey Monkey].  

 Byrnja Herbtsdottir, Oct 2021