Supporting the Cloth Diaper Community
Pam reached out to share her story about using flat diapers on the Cloth Diaper Podcast, but this episode is more about the important work she does as a cloth diaper influencer and community leader in the Philippines. Pam’s experience and background in social work really shapes her passion and we talk about how to support parents, how to support businesses, and some of the bigger government work that needs to be done.
The international cloth diaper community is a fantastic space to support and we have so many of the same goals.
About the Cloth Diaper Podcast
The Cloth Diaper Podcast is just that a podcast dedicated to sharing stories of cloth diapering with parents around the world. This is not just your everyday mom podcast or parenting podcast. We're about connecting you with your favourite cloth diaper brands and retailers, the instagram influencers you follow, and the people making big changes within the cloth diaper industry for a more inclusive, supportive community.
The Cloth Diaper Podcast is enjoyed in over 60 countries around the world. We've chatted with established brands, emerging brands, and similar niche'd audiences. We're always looking for new show guests and sponsors.
Pamana Mama is your sustainable cloth diaper collective and family information source on eco-conscious and positive parenting in the Phillipines.
cloth diapering, Philippines, people, cloth diaper, cloth diapers, cloth, diapers, community, brands, flats, diaper, parents, support, pam, question, podcast, challenge, terry, talking, world
Pam, Bailey Bouwman
Bailey Bouwman 00:00
Welcome to show 68 of the Cloth Diaper Podcast. Today’s episode is with Pam a Cloth Diaper Mom from the Philippines.
Bailey Bouwman 00:16
The cloth diaper podcast is a somewhat regular show dedicated to sharing stories of cloth diapering from parents, brands and retailers around the world.
Bailey Bouwman 00:24
My name is Bailey. I’m the host of the cloth diaper Podcast. I am the author of Cloth Diapers: the ultimate guide to textiles, washing and more, which just has been recently republished in color and now available around the world on Amazon and through global booksellers.
Bailey Bouwman 00:39
I am so excited. That is awesome, fantastic news. And I’m also the mom of two a longtime called diaper an advocate and educator and we just finished the thoughts and hand washing challenge this last week. So, I’m finally getting around to publishing some great content. I know there was a little bit of a six-week hiatus that was unscheduled and unplanned. It just kind of happens sometimes when you are a small indie podcast without a publishing studio, or a support team or annual income, you just fall behind and that happens so hopefully we can do a little bit of a catch up.
Bailey Bouwman 01:18
I have a big series here dedicated to the flats and hand washing challenge starting off with this and then continuing on with some stories around diaper banks with interviews with Jake’s diapers, Salem cloth project and Milwaukee diaper mission. These are going to be some great cornerstone pieces to this entire show that hopefully bring you some I like just inspire inspiration or passion or finding a way that we as the diaper community can kind of grow and get bigger as needed.
Bailey Bouwman 01:49
Anyways, today’s episode of the cloth diaper podcast is brought to you by Vida Mia cloth. That’s right sometimes the cloth diaper podcast runs small advertisements for cloth diaper brands Vida Mia cloth is a Latina own cloth diapering business ran out of home by stay-at-home mom crystal Our goal is to show families that using cloth isn’t scary it can be fun and simple, and the impact that it makes on our Earth is something parents should pride themselves in. We welcome you to visit www.vidamiacloth.online and join our Instagram and Facebook group Vida Mia cloth. To learn more thank you to Vida Mia cloth for supporting the cloth diaper podcast. I encourage you to check them out. I’ll be sharing links in today’s show notes and email so that you can learn more about this small Latina owned cloth diapering business.
Bailey Bouwman 02:35
Today’s episode of the cloth diaper podcast is with Pam, so Pam is a mom from the Philippines who reached out to me fam has been a longtime follower of o’clock podcast and I am so thrilled that she’s on the show because her story much like Latheefas story out in the Maldives really kind of paints this picture of this international cloth diapering space. And I think that’s I have a couple of themes in my life for 2021. The first being this theme of networking and reaching out and connecting with more cloth diaper businesses called there were banks and cloth were people and the second is this sort of international community that is out there with Romi onboard as my social media assistant and more and more cloth diaper parents reaching out to me from around the world, we’re really beginning to see this really large international community of parents coming together for a variety of different reasons. And the cloth diaper story that we experience here in North America is kind of different.
Bailey Bouwman 03:41
And it there’s some unique challenges to this international space and the struggle that parents have affordability, wash routines. And I think this is a great opportunity for the cloth diaper community to really grows, as a body of people who recognizes that the human experience with cloth diapering really is going to be vastly different and is going to impact people in different ways. So, without further ado, I’m going to stop rambling. And let’s listen to this show with Pam. Sometimes when I have international guests, the audio quality kind of can stumble. So, I hope that it is okay. But just a fair warning that something about connecting with families around the world could be a little bit hard even in this day and age on making sure that you get better audio quality. And that’s a Hawaiian thing. Anyways, let’s go.
Bailey Bouwman 04:41
Hey, I’ve got Pam is joining me and Pam, do you think you could give yourself a little introduction? Who are you and where are you joining me in the world?
Sure. Thanks for having me. Bailey. I’m a longtime listener. So, talking with you today is like a dream come true. I’m have ujar I’m a mother, a mother of Lika.
Lika is to create in Tagalog, he’s almost to our, our small family of theories born and raised in Manila in the Philippines. I am a social development worker here by trade. And since becoming a parent, I’ve identified strongly as a Filipina cloth diaper community as a gift and a mindful parenting advocate to
Bailey Bouwman 05:33
Okay, so you it was a background in social work that these things would come pretty naturally to you. Yeah. social community kind of space and parenting in general. Really? Yeah, for sure. Yeah. So why if throw two years ago, I guess or almost three years when you were pregnant with your son, right. What drew you to cloth diapering and why did you consider cloth diapering?
Yeah, that’s right. Um, well, the predominant reasons people choose cloth are we’ll reach larger three overlap. Essentially, we’re also cloth gives you more money. Well, up to a point, of course, because over stashing or hoarding may also contribute to local brands, but more so generic brands made the cheap labor abroad and might defeat the purpose of saving. But that isn’t to say having a large, super large stash is inherently wrong. Of course not. Because cloth diapers can be therapeutic people, we were for me for sure.
And it’s better to be more mindful about spending really for cloth diapers well, and personally, I’ve been striving to live a minimal Zero Waste lifestyle since around 2016. That when before getting married, or getting pregnant and have and I’ve always wanted the hashtag support local.
So, finding an online community that lives both lives out both those advocacies was natural, surprising at first, honestly, because there were so many, or do you think Well, those in 29 years, a growing online community of over 15,000 people now with around 200 local works at home mom or Wham brands who make diapers and kids apparel by hand and other resellers. Yeah. And other resellers. So PUL diapers. Oh, that’s so that’s wonderful. Yeah, it’s a budding community
Bailey Bouwman 07:50
Should be all right now. Your staff so when you decided to cloth diaper your son, how did you build your stash? And where did you kind of go where you are today? Part of why we’ve got Pam on the phone today is we’re going to talk about flats. But did you always start with flats? Or how did that kind of go?
Yeah, right. Um, it was difficult at first, because you have to do a lot of research to check what works best for you. We’ve been exclusively caught by bringing Lika since he was a newborn until now that he’s a toddler. So, the cover system is very versatile in that way. I when we started out a lot of the recommendations that came in was always covered types and flats for newborns, because it’s the most convenient. We address you know how you were in school and be like every week, diaper changes, like at least eight to 12 times a day. So, the cover system really allowed for that kind of flexibility, and you’ll be able to use them like one cover type, like twice or thrice as long as it is in feet. They’re pooed on Yeah, so there’s that and also flats work well with covers because the dry just as easily and they are you’ll be able to use them like for a longer time. Like one layered slab are my personal favorite. So, they’re ones that the ones that I use, for example, the organic bamboo, cotton parry flats that we use and also some super heavy organic cotton there. So, there are a lot of variants, but the ones that we use, we’ve been able to use them since my son was a newborn up until now so that’s super helpful. We have a couple of pocket type and snap in hybrid fitted and a few PLL diapers to butt covers and flats are our absolute favorites. They’re more they’re more affordable, they’re more versatile and They’re definitely more easy care.
Bailey Bouwman 10:02
Yeah. So, you’re talking about Terry. And I think since I’ve wrote my email and since my and then just listening to you here, there’s a few different types of Terries on the market. When you’re talking about a bamboo commentary, are you talking about like more of a thinner Terry, are you talking about like a? What I would know is like a towel thicker. Terry.
Right, right. Because there’s so many different types of terries. I think the towel type is the is the most common, I think. So that’s like terry cloth. That’s when toweling a fabric or woven, like carry is how willing essentially or terry are woven, or like a fabric woven with tiny protruding loops on one side, like similar to your regular bath towel, as you mentioned, and as smooth and flat surface on the other side. So, all in all, yeah, so all in all, it’s designed to be both highly absorbent and soft to the touch. So, they’re efficient that we and they’re also seen the be directly in contact with baby’s mom. So that’s one thing. And then this isn’t an exhaustive list by any means.
But there are two main types, I think cotton terry and French terry. And then there are like variants of those two. French pair. Yeah, French Terry has smaller loops than regular cotton terry. So, with cotton, there’s bigger loops, when you look into them and French. Yeah, and French dairy needs a bit more prepping to reach its full absorbency. But it’s very rewarding as a super once it does. So blended fabric. See, for example, like blended organic bamboo Terry is my absolute favorite. And what I often recommend to people starting out, because it’s got that it doesn’t take as long as fringe theory, the breath, like to reach its full absorbency. But it also allows for that kind of efficiency, like once you get it, it’s usually already pre activated, and you’ll be able to use it right away without having to prep.
Bailey Bouwman 12:22
Okay, yeah, that makes sense. And I think the more you talk, the more I realized I know what you’re talking about. And yeah, we could probably I will probably see about throwing some pictures. I have some example products about Terry’s. So, in the Philippines, your cloth diapering in the Philippines is flats and covers then normal. Maybe we should even throw it back to people who have diaper Are you are you sis mainstream in the Philippines?
Oh, yeah, that’s a great question. Um, cloth diapering isn’t quite mainstream yet in the Philippines, disposables are still very much the norm of much of much of the older generation I think mostly bloggers or some Gen X’s usually use traditional flats made out of Canvas cloth or muslin cloth back in Yeah, our cloth back in the day. a softer stereo. Right? Yeah, definitely not. Yeah. And, but modern cloth diapers are, you know, still quite specialized, like, modern. If you’d ask like, is modern cloth diaper in common here then? Yes, definitely more so than they were in around 2015 when it was a very niche part of parenting life people barely knew about it then. Now the pandemics brought like so much momentum with it, especially in terms of raising general public awareness and growth in numbers of local wine brands. So, like the number of brand specific chatter groups skyrocketed within almost like 10 popping up every couple of weeks when lockdown was first implemented. So, bustling little work at home seamstress market? Yeah, yeah, exactly. So, there were like a lot of work at home seamstresses who felt like they could make a name for themselves in the cloth diapering industry. So that was super interesting. Like a lot of brands just kept popping up sometime mid last year, and that was very overwhelming. What kind of diapers are they making? hybrid fitted mostly saw fit? Yeah, some fitted as well, but most of them are hybrid or hf ‘s and covers and thoughts aren’t as common but yeah. Yeah, definitely. Hybrid fitted diapers.
Bailey Bouwman 14:56
It’s interesting to hear you talk about rise in work at home mom cloth diapering. It’s interesting to hear it just because I wouldn’t say we’ve had that same experience in North America. So, for there to be like a little boom. And makers, it’s kind of interesting is the Philippines. Mind my ignorance as the Philippines known for manufacturing, what is that? What’s the Philippines, like dominant industry?
We’re a very service-oriented industry. So, like having this boom in like manufacturing, even in a very small scale, like small businesses, it was still very interesting to witness especially like it’s still ongoing, of course, but like, in a service driven industry like the one in like what we have in the Philippines, it’s very challenging to have the level of service of the level of the service industry, for example, because a lot of the brands are still very small. So, you have like, multiple small brands in my brain, for example, and even very small retailers have been well brands from abroad. So that’s there’s a lot of competition, and then that breeds like sometimes it’s unhealthy competition, but overall, it’s very, it’s very interesting to find, like, what works for you. Mm hmm.
Bailey Bouwman 16:40
Yeah. That’s it’s interesting to hear about the changes that are happening in your area. So, my other question that is for Philippine parents, or maybe for yourself and from your experience, what has been the biggest challenge for cloth diapering or around cloth diapering as a challenge around washing a challenge around affording a challenge? What is something that you feel is maybe uniquely characteristic to your cloth diaper experience?
Right, um, I think this is a pretty universal experience. I think for anybody who chooses to venture into cloth diapers is what you mentioned, the three main challenges, I think, even in the Philippines is, first is price. And then the second is like access to information. And then the last challenge would definitely be committing to exerting that much effort.
Bailey Bouwman 17:45
What is like the cost comparison? For cloth diapers in the Philippines? I know like in North America, they really kind of vary drastically. Is that a similar experience in the Philippines? Are they significantly more expensive than disposables? Or are they just kind of on par?
Um, definitely a lot more expensive than disposables. Like you can get it? Well, if you compare them by piece, a disposable diaper would be like, three best sauce that’s around, like not even $1. So, and but a cloth diaper will cost at least 400 bucks or so that’s around eight or $9. So that kind of disparity in the price is very overwhelming, especially for low- and middle-income families who might not be able to afford cloth diapers as readily as people who have like a more flexible budget to work with. Yeah, and then
Bailey Bouwman 19:00
So cheap diaper in North America is about Yeah, 810 $12 which I would say like for like low income is really hard to obtain. But 400 pesos is that. Is that? Is that? What is that significant? What is that? Is that experience for somebody?
Yeah, yeah, definitely. Because for 400 pesos, I think you’ll be able to get like a decent amount of rice like a kilo or more of rice, which people will opt to get as opposed to like, cloth diaper, which, you know, and then it’s, um, what else can you buy, there’s a lot of things that you can get like food, like very simple. like vegetables, just like in general. It’s, it’s, it’s affordable. It’s a lot of it’s a significant amount. If you want the Like, two meals to prepare, like two or three meals for the family in a day. So that’s sufficient. If you know how to budget properly then yeah, like that’s just enough to prepare like a very simple meal for the family.
Bailey Bouwman 20:18
an interesting thought that I’ve been trying to I haven’t. I’ve been asked, I asked the Mum, I’ve been asking different people this kind of question, both like, on off the record, just because I’m, the North American cloth diaper market is, is a big price tag. And I wonder about how that can scale globally. And we have seen such a rise in the international cloth community over the past year or so. And it’s about I’m trying to figure out how to support the accessibility, affordability of cloth diapering around the world, like when dealing with so many different economies of scale, right? With the value of products being worth different in the Philippines versus Canada or the United States, how do you how do you scale a market that way? That’s just kind of been like my curiosities and my wonderings about what’s going on? I know, I was trying to I was asking Romy, my assistant a few of these questions as well as I pay her and Canadian dollars. And she’s Argentine pesos. So yeah,
yeah. Yeah, yeah. It’s, it’s, um, it’s such an intriguing aspect of our community that the cloth community has definitely grown like the past year, I think one way that we can support is, this is the social development worker in the past, I think a lot of it will have to boil down to policy support and like have the legal frameworks to support small businesses to be able to enable them to scale. at a level that’s, you know, that that’s more that can allow for more people to buy, these diapers have a price that isn’t so high, because as you mentioned, even in North America, cloth diapers are almost a premium for some people, and also is here and the Philippines, not a lot of people opt for cloth diapers, even if there are very affordable options, mainly because there isn’t enough support for the small businesses, the grow in that way and the scale, because a lot of the one brands that I talked to you about earlier, are still even if they do want to grow their business, not a lot of people can like there are a very few a very small number of wine brands now who have grown like significantly and have been able to supply a lot of the demand in other regions here in the Philippines. But
Bailey Bouwman 23:02
running a business takes a lot of money. It takes a lot of trading; it takes a lot of resources.
Yeah, yeah, exactly. Exactly. So not many people are equipped with the knowledge that they would need the scale. So that’s one challenge. I think that as much as successful as their small businesses are, they would need a lot of public support. And I would say like, legal, like support from the legal landscape to be able to access more people, because not many are able to do that with the resources with the limited resources that they have.
Bailey Bouwman 23:49
If I think of all the all the different ways that this question was gone in the past. And that’s an answer I have yet to receive Pam. But it’s a fantastic way to exactly there’s so many ways that our governments and policymakers around the world that just even in the Philippines, Canada, the United States, the UK can support small businesses. And small business owners are a great way to support the father community because they really get to have some great relationships with customers to convince them in Yeah, yeah. Yeah. What I had a question about washing it’s not really on here, but because I kind of thought that maybe we would get to it naturally do find that you have any specific challenges with washing cloth diapers and is that why?
Oh, yeah, um, well, personally, for me, Bailey, it isn’t too difficult. Like I’m able the wash pretty well because we have access. Thankfully, we have pretty stable access to water. But see, for example, there are other families, whether they’re in the city or if they’re in more provincial areas. So, this is a bean there. There’s like a certain type of hard water I think is what they call it that makes it a little difficult care for called diapers properly because it’s the type of water that’s not as filtered as water in the city. So that then makes it difficult for them the maintain diapers
Bailey Bouwman 25:22
Hard water can be such a challenge, especially like, yeah, unfiltered water I know of parents around me who have well, water is what we would call and it’s like, hard, Rocky, High in calcium, high in iron kind of yucky water? It can make it such a challenge. Yeah,
yeah, exactly. That’s I’ve heard a lot of stories from our local cloth library community where they have to wash their diaper several times, or they’d have the find a different source of water. So, their diapers will still maintain like a quality that can still be sold after the after they no longer have use for them. So that’s I mean, what’s one of the biggest challenges in general is access to water. And then the other one, I think another challenge, besides washing is access to information. Like Not a lot of people in the Philippines have stable internet access. They don’t have access.
Bailey Bouwman 26:34
So yeah. That’s life everywhere. Well, not everywhere. But I mean, yeah, sorry, cutting out happens to the best of us, is what I was trying to think. But yes, the stable internet access, but you’re talking about you have a Facebook group of 50,000 in the Philippines. Pam. So you’re finding small ways to kind of get around that information barrier, but I guess it’s still a bit of a problem.
Yeah, yeah. But um, I think the difficulty lies in having to look for these groups like they aren’t, they aren’t like wild, widely known and offer people the know what to look for. Like, I think that’s, that’s one thing to really overcome. Because if you aren’t really aware of it, you won’t be able to know what to search for. So. So even if we do have like three mean, cloth diapering groups, like these online community groups are like the ones that I mentioned groups that are very supportive. And that provides a lot of resource like there. They are a great resource for information for parents who are starting out with cloth my brain. But yeah, it’s you have to know where to look to be able to find them. And then after that, you also have the like sift through all of the information that you find yet so much information. So, like, a lot of people who are curious, like our cloth diaper curious. And the being very turned off by all the information that the end up choosing the convenience of disposables, over cloth diapers, because it just you know, it’s a lot of effort. It’s a lot of a lot. It’s a huge educational curve. Yeah. Yeah.
Bailey Bouwman 28:41
What’s the language in the Philippines?
Um, mostly, we have a lot. There are a lot of Pilipino languages. But what most people what a lot of people use are, you know, Tagalog, and this I, and it really depends on which region you’re in. But that is widely spoken and English. So that explains
Bailey Bouwman 29:04
why I sit here, and I was like, I’m, I don’t know if I’ve ever heard of a of a name for the language of the Philippines. Yeah. That would be why because you say there’s a lot in my part of the world, we get a lot of Philippine foreign workers. Right. I was like, but I don’t think I’ve ever heard of a language. So, I was going to I was trying to figure out what that does that do you find that that makes it a challenge with being so many different languages and dialects are? Oh, to also transfer the information or is there just
oh, no, oh, not? Oh, that’s an interesting question. Um, well, thanks for like in our Facebook group, did they just speak English? or What is that? What is that discourse there? Yeah, um, most people in the online group speak for that. So that works out just fine for everyone. Of course, there are other Filipino live images that people can use. But in terms of like the wider community and what language we speak, it’s usually the dialogue or a mix of English and Tagalog, which we call tallish. So that’s also, that’s also one. That’s also one way. So, communicating the information isn’t too difficult because we have a common language to speak with it. I think it really is just the, like the information overload.
Bailey Bouwman 30:29
Yeah, it’s ridiculous. So much, so much like I tried to write a book about cloth diapering, and I couldn’t keep it under 200 pages, like there is so much information. And it’s such a I know, it’s like something that I chat with brands about all the time, like, how you simplify it, and how do you really like the only answer I ever get out of people is like, just you got to sit down with somebody at a pile of cloth diapers. And that really helps with the get rid of the overwhelm, like seeing and touching it instead of 30 pages of scrolling. But yeah, it’s a lot to take in.
Yeah, I get you. It’s when I started to, like I like when you mentioned that you know that it’s difficult to condense all of that information, even in just like 100 pages. I remember, I remember just how many hours I put just researching and reading through all the previous posts in these groups. And like, yeah, and then also thinking, what does that mean for me? Like, what? What are the ones? What information can I use for myself and for the new baby that I have? Right? And it’s, and it’s so difficult to have to break everything down? Especially when you’re when you’re new to everything?
Bailey Bouwman 31:52
Oh, yeah, you’re already trying to figure out what pregnancy is doing and labor and what crib to buy all the other dozen options, let alone the diaper.
Yeah, exactly. So, I’m usually what, what more, what more experienced members of cloth diapering community recommend, is they usually will, everybody now follows like 123, like three generals. points, like three? How do I have three general recommendations? Yeah, I got it. Um, there are three general points to consider when choosing your cloth diaper. And most people say that that’s like your laundry schedule. So that’s one. So that’s avoiding unnecessary spending or over staffing. But yeah, it’s um, if you, if your laundry like every two or three days, then you, then your sash will depend on that on the number of days. And that’s like the number of diapers you use per day. And then the number of days times the number of days you It takes before you laundry like before your next laundry day, and also see what pattern fits your baby the best in which stages of growth that applies to. And the third would be like which soakers. Or inserts will suit their output the best because sometimes, like this type of cotton theory that this specific size might not be the best for like a three-month-old, but it might be okay for when they’re like a day old or something. Or sometimes the single layered flats that say for example, if it was bamboo, French commentary or something, then it would have been if it was large, right? If it was a large flat, then it can be used from newborn up until they’re until they’re in their potty-training stages. But that again really depends on like, how you fold them and how you care for them. So, it’s a lot of things to consider. But like once you know your laundry schedule, like what pattern could for your baby, and also what soakers or what blend of these inserts will work the best for your baby then it’s a little less difficult from there.
Bailey Bouwman 34:24
But those are still three very big questions that can be daunting. But yeah, you’re working your way through there. So, but you find that trying to get new parents to answer or explore those three key ideas has helped in your cloth diaper community. Reduce that overwhelm Yeah,
yeah, for sure. I think providing new parents or caregivers or like people new to the club or people in youth club that I bring General, like with personalized support is the most important and most valuable resource we can provide as a community like finding your permanent stash or your perma stash is tough and it can be very costly, IF done without research and the brands and without knowing the reviews and if you have like this mindset like to try a little bit of everything, then that will pose a challenge because I think the best thing to do is to try a lot of only the best things and even the best things will vary per family because like what is best for one person might not be really good for the other so then that’s difficult like you have to find what works for you Even if it might not work for other people. It is like a rabbit hole of information. Yeah, definitely.
Bailey Bouwman 35:53
But. You are a cloth diaper influencer in the Philippines. We’ve kind of we’ve kind of brought that around. What where can people find you? You had a great Facebook page with some fantastic videos and information about flats about Terry’s, what’s that account name him that people can check out?
Oh, yeah, thanks for asking. Um, people can besides the online community groups that I mentioned earlier, you can also find me on Facebook and Instagram at Pamana Mama.
Bailey Bouwman 36:33
I was looking at it. And I was like, oh, is it interesting name, but it’s your first name? It’s okay.
Yeah, that’s a coincidence, because pamana is heritage or legacy in our dialogue. So, it’s Oh, yeah. So, it’s perfect to describe like the kind of legacy we want to leave our children like a community that striving to save the earth and race better and Kinder kids, one caused by Britain, why not the tightness of time? So? Yeah, that’s why.
Bailey Bouwman 37:04
So, what are what are your big goal? Like, you sound like you are. Like, you’ve got like a goal that you want to accomplish with your role as a cloth diaper educator. Do you? Do you have like a big milestone moment that you’re kind of looking or working towards right now and supporting cloth diapering in the Philippines?
Yeah, well, definitely the biggest goal is, as we talked about earlier, in the episode is being able to find like that legal support, like finding that policy framework that will enable more small local businesses to be supported in ways that they need to be supported. So yeah, so that’s definitely the goal. But okay. Yeah. But in smaller, more micro scale, I think, what is that you? I was going to say. Is that your, your social work background? Yeah, coming into play. I think, like, providing that personalized support, and finding your perma stash, like per family, is something that I really enjoyed doing. Like when people messaged me on my personal Facebook account, or like through the Pomona page, they always asked me, what are your recommendations? what is best for my baby? And I’m sure a lot of people in the community also get those questions. But it’s, um, I always get so energized. like reading them, like I always feel like yeah, okay, I’m so happy to be here for you and help you with your journey. So yeah, that’s definitely the love.
Bailey Bouwman 38:52
Yeah, I love that because I have gotten a little bit burned out on answering all those questions all the time. So, it’s so wonderful to hear that there’s other people stepping into those shoes and supporting parents around the world to find the right diaper for them. It’s such important work to be able to work with parents one on one and to be a safe space for people to come reach out to you in that way.
Yeah, definitely. I understand that one on one chats. And conversations can be super draining at certain points, especially when you have like so many people asking you the same exact questions but like, once you get into their story and how they got into cloth diapering again, the social development worker in me talking, it’s always it puts everything into perspective. Like when they say oh, it’s this is my family background. This is what I’ve been struggling with as a parent sometimes even struggling as a mom, right? Because it’s, there’s so much there’s so many things to navigate through as a new parent or even as like the mom in general or Parents in general caregiver in general. So, in some when they besides talking about cloth diapering, they also talk to me about their own struggles in life and how that factor in how they’re dealing with their baby and also how their cloth diapering. So that’s always a joy.
Bailey Bouwman 40:21
Yeah, I think like that is something I feel the I’ve really tried to also encourage is that that cloth conversation about what diaper is best for me is not just, it’s not just you can’t just I can’t just spit out an answer. It really is learning about what’s going on in that person’s life, to find the best recommendation so that you give an answer that makes them feel empowered to continue parenting and continue cloth diapering in the best way that they can. So I love hearing that from you. At that make me so excited. And I have a few more shows kind of lining up along this too. And I just chatted with another Mama. And we’re going to talk about she designed a cloth diaper course that she works with her doula, and she delivers locally. Like, there’s so many spaces here for micro influencing within your specific community or within your country to reach out, reach out to people in this amazing one to one scale and come in some of the cloth diaper.
Yeah, definitely. I think that’s a wonderful idea. I’d be I’d love to hear more about
Bailey Bouwman 41:27
it, oh, you’ll listen to it, whatever I get it edited. But it’s just there’s that’s kind of feeling like a theme. I sometimes I record a whole bunch of podcasts and like a little bit of a theme comes up. And I feel like this theme that’s kind of popping up is really this one to one. And then the best way to make one to one happiness by expanding. We can’t, it can’t just be Pam in the Philippines and Bailey in Canada, it has to be Pam and a whole bunch of other leaders in the Philippines. Right? And in order to really make that impact so but you’re leaving a positive impact as you are you’re encouraging other leaders, then that’s what it sounds like, that you’re doing in your cloth diaper community. So Oh, thanks so much. Like you’re talking about your chat with them. And it sounds like you’re, you’re being an inspiration. But maybe that’s my perceived, you know, email chat.
things really ever there are a lot of what I think everybody’s an influencer in their own way. It’s just yeah, it’s just a matter of magnitude. And I think it really, I’m just really thankful to be part of a community that that is super involved with, with these things, and they really want to help each other. Everybody just wants to help each other one on one. And that’s super, super inspiring. Because even if people constantly ask like the same questions every time, there’s always one, sometimes even five up to like 10 or more people to answer the question, and then they just share their experience like, hey, this is what worked for me, maybe you could consider it because we were you sound like you’re in the same situation. So, it’s, it’s so it’s really inspiring to see just how willing people are to help each other out with these things. And I’m really hoping that in the future that will lead to more dedicated policy advocacy efforts to make sure that these changes are filled long term. Yeah.
Bailey Bouwman 43:39
Not knowing anything about Pilipino politics. Is that a potential like does you feel like it could happen? Or does it feel far-fetched?
But honestly, it feels a little far-fetched now, but I’m really hoping that like with more research and like finding which communities are which nonprofits are already working on supporting small businesses, I think that’s a good entry point. Involve cloth diapers in and also say for example, there have been recent laws enacted in local governments as well, there hasn’t been a national law yet, but in some local governments single use plastic has already been banned. So, like having people advocate for that, but on the level of family households, for example, that’s one way the encourage at least small scale, local support in that way, the find your local government and encourage them to not only ban single use plastics, but also include disposable diapers in that category. So, it isn’t You know, so you also target the industry and that way hopefully not to make them too angry. But like just the habit just encourage more people the switch to cloth because of how Yeah, how difficult things can be otherwise,
Bailey Bouwman 45:19
have you? Have you looked into the UK nappy network as a framework or similar idea? Oh, I haven’t yet I will do that. That would be my recommendation for you. I just talked with Baba, who was my most recent episode, and she was talking about the UK nappy network. And they’ve done a lot of the come to the bringing together of the cloth diaper community to do lobby and make some leave ways in the UK and that area. So that might be an organization for you to reach out to and learn and see if we have any advice for what you could model in the Philippines.
Yeah, that’s amazing advice. Thanks, Bailey. I’ll check that out. I was able to listen to that episode, but I haven’t been able to contact the people there. So, I’ll try to do that.
Bailey Bouwman 46:09
Oh, Charlie, Banana, I chatted with her recently, as well as she had had a positive experience with the UK nappy network for lobbying of cloth diapers. Just because that similar cohesive social policy collective is not something that they’re experiencing in North America, but maybe we’ll come here to but there’s definitely hopefully there’s what am I trying to stumble over? collaboration, there’s room for collaboration to really make some powerful impact in policy, where it’s better when we come together to for it like if we can all be on the same team when we’re lobbying government to support us.
Bailey Bouwman 46:49
Yeah. All right. Well, I we have kind of tangent in tangents. But I hear that I’m needed for bedtime. So, I am going to part you do I know we’ve just shared your Facebook page. And I would love to catch up in a year or so Pam to like, don’t be a stranger. I am so fascinated about what’s going on in the Philippines for cloth diapering this whole time.
Bailey Bouwman 47:22
And I had set out to talk about flats talking about flat cloth diapering and make this an episode that we would launch full flats and hand washing challenge. But as I listened to it again, I remember that our conversation was so much more about other things about the cloth diaper community about the important work that the international cloth diaper community is doing. And then we kind of all have the same goals, the same challenges. And I think there’s so much potential here for us to come together and work together and try to achieve this wonderful greatness. I know this episode was a little bit less about flats and a little bit more about that international or that one on one or how to support cloth diaper communities. But I hope that you learned a few things you have a few great takeaways, and you enjoyed this show. I know that international guests can be hard shows to listen to because the audio quality is a little bit less than awesome. I try my best, but I am just a rookie cloth diaper podcaster I will put the Show Notes for this episode over at coffee or podcast.com slash show dash 68. I am don’t have them transcribed right now but I am going to put them through a system, and I will get some sort of transcription up and going so at least you have some general idea about what’s going on for the show. podcast I am always accepting guest you can email me at Bailey at cloth diaper podcast calm and I will be scheduling a recording this summer for fall 2021 content. If you want to help or support the cloth diaper podcast show you can also email or DM me, I am slow on my emails, but I do get back to my DMS occasionally. Thank you so much for listening to the cloth diaper podcast and until next week.
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Professional Cloth Diaper Educator
Bailey brings 5+ years of cloth diapering experience and conversation to the cloth diaper space. She's not just your every day mom blogger sharing her experience - Bailey is immersed in the cloth diaper community learning from other parents and growing as an individual. She wants to find the cloth diaper solution that truly works for you.
Bailey believes we need to stop and listen to cloth diapering parents. We need to recognize our own bias and preferences and focus on solutions that work for you, not us. The Cloth Diaper community needs to recognize the privilege of being able to cloth diaper, and provide spaces for more conversations and stories.
Cloth diapering is not about rules but about our own strength as parents to do the best we can for our children with the resources available.
Cloth Diaper Podcast is located in Northern BC, Canada on the traditional territories of the Lheidli T'enneh First Nations.
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About the Cloth Diaper Podcast
The Cloth Diaper Podcast is a somewhat regular podcast sharing stories from cloth diaper parents, brands and retailers from around the world.
The Cloth Diaper Podcast is not affiliated with any school of thought of diaper laundry but instead focus on the power of peer-to-peer story telling to empower you to make your own cloth diaper journey.
Cloth Diapering is not this or that, but rather many different experiences.