‘Nappy lady’ promotes cloth diaper benefits
Waste-free parenting is not as hard as people might think, Kate Meads says.
The 39-year-old mother of one swears the concept after taking a different approach to parenting by using reusable nappies and starting a vegetable garden in her backyard.
She’s known as the Nappy Lady, Waste Warrior and to her 12-year-old son Daniel, the Lorax who speaks to the earth and the trees. But Meads just wants to do her best for the environment and spread the gospel to anyone that will listen.
She’s partnered with 40 councils in New Zealand and runs a waste-free parenting workshop where she speaks about reducing waste and saving money.
‘‘We know what we need to do but it all seems like too much work and if we try to change everything overnight, it is not really sustainable in our modern busy schedules,’’ Meads said.
‘‘We forget making changes is not an all or nothing deal. Often we think if we make a small change it won’t make a difference but it does.’’
When Meads and her husband Vaughn became parents, they fell into the trap of becoming hugely consumptive of disposable nappies for the apparent reason that it saved on time. After realising how much disposable nappies weighed on their budget, they switched to cloth diapers.
‘‘After a short time, we realised that they were not as hard as people kept telling us they would be.’’
A child will use more than 5000 nappies from birth to two years and for disposable nappies, these go straight to the landfill and create pollution.
‘‘One of my challenges to parents who attend my workshops is to get them to commit to using just one cloth nappy per day because if they do that, 365 nappies per child per year will not go to landfill.
‘‘There are around 145,000 babies in nappies at any one time in New Zealand and if every child in nappies had one cloth nappy change per day, that would result in around a million nappies per week not being sent to the landfills.’’
Meads will hold workshops in Grey Lynn on February 13, followed by workshops in Kelston and Pukekohe. Tickets cost $30 per person or $35 for couples.
Nappy Lady Kate Meads says disposable diapers are polluting the environment.