Resource Use

Reusable Nappy Week focuses on ‘choose to reuse’

The annual international Reusable Nappy Week is currently taking place  (25 April - 1 May), encouraging parents and caregivers to switch from disposable to reusable cloth nappies.

Reusable Nappy Week Arranged by the UK Reusable Nappy Week Steering Committee and organised by Real Nappies for London, the event organisers will hold a series of events, offers and educational activities across the country and online.

An estimated that three billion single-use nappies are thrown away in the UK every year. Reusable Nappy Week aims to show how a significant reduction of household waste and reliance on single-use plastic that can be achieved.

As part of this year’s event, Reusable Nappy Week is offering nappy, baby clothes and maternity wear ‘Give & Take’ events, held on 27 April and 29 April, so that parents and carers can donate and collect baby items for free, gain reusable nappies advice and give back to their local circular economy.

During the week there will also be opportunities to hire reusable nappies via the UK Cloth Nappy Library Network, as well as the opportunity to find local Washable Nappy Laundry Services, with the incentive to help families get started.

As well as organising Reusable Nappy Week the waste prevention project, Real Nappies for London – administered by the Women’s Environmental Network, also works alongside nine London Boroughs. The partnership operates in the aim of offering the parents of babies under 18 months and parents-to-be, living in the borough, a reusable nappy voucher worth up to £54.15, redeemable for a pack of reusable nappies or for a trial washable nappy laundry service.

Alice Walker, Project Manager at Real Nappies for London, said: “Whether using reusable nappies full-time or part-time, all families can play their part in reducing single-use plastic waste to combat climate change. Reusable Nappy Week is about showing everyone just how easy it can be to incorporate reusable nappies into a baby changing routine and that it doesn’t have to be all or nothing to make a difference.

“We want our events to raise awareness among councils and residents alike of what the research shows – local authorities can save millions of pounds a year in waste disposal costs and recycling contamination costs, while enabling parents to make savings on nappy costs at the same time doing their bit to reduce single-use plastic waste.”

Martin Capstick, Managing Director of North London Waste Authority, also commented: “The reusable nappy scheme had an impressive uptake of subsidy vouchers in 2020-2021 with an estimated 1,000 tonnes of waste avoided by almost 3,500 families. The scheme is an important part of our work to promote resource efficiency, minimise climate impact and improve the local environment through a comprehensive and sustainable programme of waste prevention and recycling activities.”