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Lots of Americans can’t afford diapers, but the White House has a fascinating solution.

How distributors, manufacturers, and the White House are working together for good.

There’s a big diaper problem in America that no one’s really talking about.

Image via Jet/YouTube.


Nearly 1 out of every 3 families in the United States report they often can’t afford to buy diapers when they need them, the White House states. Plus, low-income households end up spending nearly twice as much on diapers as middle-class folks because they don’t have access to bulk stores that charge less overall for diapers.

This means that every day, millions of American families come face to face with a question that no one should have to ask: "Should I buy diapers for my child or food for my family?"

This reality has led to what politicians are calling the "diaper gap" — a widening gap between folks who can afford the diapers their babies need and folks who can’t.

Unlike other essentials like food and health care, the government doesn’t offer federal assistance to low-income households for diaper purchases. Because of this, low-income families end up spending an average $936 per child per year on diapers alone, which means moms end up keeping their babies in dirty diapers longer to save money, too. Research published in Pediatrics shows doing this can lead to diaper rash, infections, and even permanent scarring.

Good news, though: Our good old government has a plan.

Image via Jet/YouTube.

This is where things get kind of unusual: Enter Jet.com.

The White House started the conversation with Jet.com, a discount wholesale website, in the most public way they could — via Twitter. It was important for the White House to come clean about this longstanding problem and to make it known publicly they needed assistance from the greater community to find a solution.

Then Jet.com proposed some solutions, but they realized they had to start with bringing in a manufacturing partner to help make more affordable diapers a sustainable reality. Enter Cuties diapers.

Cuties discovered that the key to making diapers cheaper wasn’t even about cutting corners in diaper quality, but rather creating more efficient packaging.


Image via Jet/YouTube.

So they looked into cutting down on packaging and even found ways to fit more diapers into each package. Eventually they came up with some great ideas, and Jet took it from there.

Together with the White House, Jet.com set up a system that allowed any nonprofit to apply to procure drastically discounted diapers.

Image via Jet/YouTube.

They launched the program on March 10, 2016, with the goal of spreading the initiative nationwide through the tributaries of smaller, charitable organizations.

"We’re really just trying to broaden the network of organizations who think about delivering diapers to the families they already serve," Dana Hork, director of brand experience at Jet.com, said in a documentary interview.

Here’s how much cheaper Jet was able to make their diapers (with Cuties’ help, of course):

Image via Jet/YouTube.

For an enrolled nonprofit, that price comes down again to just 13 cents per diaper. That means people will end up paying approximately one-fourth of what they used to!

This program has the potential to shrink the diaper gap to nothing, which is a big deal.

According to the National Diaper Bank Network, the program should help distribute at least 10 to 15 million diapers to families who need them this year. While this may not be a permanent solution to the problem, it’s a heck of a good start.

It’s easy to get down on the government for not doing their job (especially these days).

Image via Jet/YouTube.

But this all happened because the White House asked the community for help, which is pretty cool. When you see collaborative initiatives like this, you realize there are some wonderful things being accomplished in our government — you just have to look for them.

Joy

1991 blooper clip of Robin Williams and Elmo is a wholesome nugget of comedic genius

Robin Williams is still bringing smiles to faces after all these years.

Robin Williams and Elmo (Kevin Clash) bloopers.

The late Robin Williams could make picking out socks funny, so pairing him with the fuzzy red monster Elmo was bound to be pure wholesome gold. Honestly, how the puppeteer, Kevin Clash, didn’t completely break character and bust out laughing is a miracle. In this short outtake clip, you get to see Williams crack a few jokes in his signature style while Elmo tries desperately to keep it together.

Williams has been a household name since what seems like the beginning of time, and before his death in 2014, he would make frequent appearances on "Sesame Street." The late actor played so many roles that if you were ask 10 different people what their favorite was, you’d likely get 10 different answers. But for the kids who spent their childhoods watching PBS, they got to see him being silly with his favorite monsters and a giant yellow canary. At least I think Big Bird is a canary.

When he stopped by "Sesame Street" for the special “Big Bird's Birthday or Let Me Eat Cake” in 1991, he was there to show Elmo all of the wonderful things you could do with a stick. Williams turns the stick into a hockey stick and a baton before losing his composure and walking off camera. The entire time, Elmo looks enthralled … if puppets can look enthralled. He’s definitely paying attention before slumping over at the realization that Williams goofed a line. But the actor comes back to continue the scene before Elmo slinks down inside his box after getting Williams’ name wrong, which causes his human co-star to take his stick and leave.

The little blooper reel is so cute and pure that it makes you feel good for a few minutes. For an additional boost of serotonin, check out this other (perfectly executed) clip about conflict that Williams did with the two-headed monster. He certainly had a way of engaging his audience, so it makes sense that even after all of these years, he's still greatly missed.

Noe Hernandez and Maria Carrillo, the owners of Noel Barber Shop in Anaheim, California.

Jordyn Poulter was the youngest member of the U.S. women’s volleyball team, which took home the gold medal at the Tokyo Olympics last year. She was named the best setter at the Tokyo games and has been a member of the team since 2018.

Unfortunately, according to a report from ABC 7 News, her gold medal was stolen from her car in a parking garage in Anaheim, California, on May 25.

It was taken along with her passport, which she kept in her glove compartment. While storing a gold medal in your car probably isn’t the best idea, she did it to keep it by her side while fulfilling the hectic schedule of an Olympian.

"We live this crazy life of living so many different places. So many of us play overseas, then go home, then come out here and train,” Poulter said, according to ABC 7. "So I keep the medal on me (to show) friends and family I haven't seen in a while, or just people in the community who want to see the medal. Everyone feels connected to it when they meet an Olympian, and it's such a cool thing to share with people."

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Hold on, Frankie! Mama's coming!

How do you explain motherhood in a nutshell? Thanks to Cait Oakley, who stopped a preying bald eagle from capturing her pet goose as she breastfed her daughter, we have it summed up in one gloriously hilarious TikTok.

The now viral video shows the family’s pet goose, Frankie, frantically squawking as it gets dragged off the porch by a bald eagle—likely another mom taking care of her own kiddos.

Wearing nothing but her husband’s boxers while holding on to her newborn, Willow, Oakley dashes out of the house and successfully comes to Frankie's rescue while yelling “hey, hey hey!”

The video’s caption revealed that the Oakleys had already lost three chickens due to hungry birds of prey, so nothing was going to stop “Mama bear” from protecting “sweet Frankie.” Not even a breastfeeding session.

Oakley told TODAY Parents, “It was just a split second reaction ...There was nowhere to put Willow down at that point.” Sometimes being a mom means feeding your child and saving your pet all at the same time.

As for how she feels about running around topless in her underwear on camera, Oakley declared, “I could have been naked and I’m like, ‘whatever, I’m feeding my baby.’”

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