Texas is in the midst of a population explosion and District 109, which encompasses DeSoto, Cedar Hill, Glenn Heights, Hutchins, Lancaster, Wilmer, and parts of Ovilla, Ferris, Seagoville, and Dallas, has been one of the fastest-growing in the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex.

Facing reports that one-in-three mothers in Texas have cut back on basic essentials to afford diapers for their children, State Representative Carl Sherman announced on February 17 that he was joining local grassroots organizations to push a diaper drive throughout 2022. 

“When you look at the makeup of our state as far as the demographics, often people don’t think about that part of the Texas population under three years old which represents 1.1 million people,” Rep. Carl Sherman said in a telephone interview with The Dallas Express. “Children three and under have a special need for diapers, and right now, their mothers are having a hard time.”

The primary organization partner for the drive is Cedar Hill Shares, a non-profit group dedicated to providing essential goods to needy families. Sherman said that the coalition hopes to partner with other organizations and food pantries to expand the diaper drive’s efforts.

Among the factors that burden families in the region are rising rent prices. Sherman said that rental rates have climbed by 20% to 30% in some areas. 

“It’s not an incremental amount,” said Sherman. “We are talking about double-digit increases people are having to pay. Inflation is really real.”

Sherman said that he hopes the effort spreads beyond the district because the need for diapers for young children isn’t a localized problem. This is the first time he has participated in an effort of this kind, a decision he said he made when thinking about his own family.

“My wife, Michelle and I, we have five children. [The cost of diapers] is one of those things you don’t think about if you don’t have small children,” said Sherman. “For me, knowing that diapers are one of those costs just like clothes you’ve got to buy. I just don’t think that essentials like diapers should be one of those things families need to worry about.” 

The diaper drive will run officially through March 28, with donations going to the Cedar Hill Shares organization. However, donations are welcomed throughout the year. Organizers are asking for donations of new diapers and baby wipes. Donations can be made at the District Office in Lancaster during business hours.

 Sherman said that he challenges the residents of his district to make this donation effort a success. While there are no target goals set, Sherman said that he hopes to see a massive turnout that inspires residents in other parts of the state to think about donating diapers and essentials for children under three to help offset the rising costs in the state. 

“The spirit of love and unity is alive and well in District 109, and together we can make a difference in the lives of all those in need in our District and throughout the Dallas area and beyond,” said Sherman.