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Parenting during a pandemic: WHO, UNICEF + The University of Oxford release a new resource for parents

They cover everything from how to talk to your kids about COVID-19 to how keep calm and manage stress.

Parenting during a pandemic: WHO, UNICEF + The University of Oxford release a new resource for parents

Parenting in isolation isn't natural. It's just not the way humans usually raise little humans. We've said before that the proverbial village is so important for parents and that mothers suffer the most when it disappears.

That's why we are so glad the global village is stepping up to help parents who now must raise children in unnaturally restrictive circumstances during the coronavirus pandemic.

The world-renowned University of Oxford is working with the World Health Organization (WHO) and UNICEF to launch 6 one-page tips for parents to get us through this time. The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), USAID and the Global Partnership to End Violence Against Children also partnered in the creation of these tips.

Lucie Cluver, Professor of Child and Family Social Work at the University of Oxford developed the tips—which cover everything from how to talk to your kids about COVID-19 to how keep calm and manage stress.

"Globally, we are now parenting under extremely stressful conditions," says Cluver. "Not only are children and teenagers out of school, but families are living with increased stress, fear and financial worries. All of these make us less tolerant and more irritable. At its most serious, we know that violence in homes increases during times of school closures associated with health emergencies. But this is for everyone who needs and deserves effective parenting support."

There is so much info floating around the internet right now which claims to tell parents how to parent during the pandemic, but much of it is not rooted in science or approved by experts. These tip sheets from Oxford are evidence-based and vetted by experts.



"These tips are for all of us who are wondering how we are going to manage with our children at home for the next weeks or months! But this time of hardship may also allow for creative opportunity: a chance to build stronger relationships with our families, and to have fun together—which is great for children's wellbeing and sense of security," says Cluver.

Volunteers are currently translating the sheets into 55 languages, with translations available on covid19parenting.com. The resources are backed up by a letter published in The Lancet on March 25, 2020, available here: http://www.thelancet.com/journals/lancet/article/PIIS0140-6736(20)30736-4/fulltext

These resources were developed in partnership with WHO, UNICEF, the Internet of Good Things, US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), USAID and the Global Partnership to End Violence Against Children.

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One of the main reasons we launched the Motherly Shop is to help take some of that stress away. We've tracked down the best brands and products developed by people (and in many cases, women!) that truly work to serve the needs of real mamas, especially throughout the overwhelming transition into motherhood.

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Motherly editors’ 7 favorite hacks for organizing their diaper bags

Make frantically fishing around for a diaper a thing of the past!

As any parent knows, the term "diaper bag" only scratches the surface. In reality, this catchall holds so much more: a change of clothes, bottles, snacks, wipes and probably about a dozen more essential items.

Which makes finding the exact item you need, when you need it (read: A diaper when you're in public with a blowout on your hands) kind of tricky.

That's why organization is the name of the game when it comes to outings with your littles. We pooled the Motherly team of editors to learn some favorite hacks for organizing diaper bags. Here are our top tips.

1. Divide and conquer with small bags

Here's a tip we heard more than a few times: Use smaller storage bags to organize your stuff. Not only is this helpful for keeping related items together, but it can also help keep things from floating around in the expanse of the larger diaper bag. These bags don't have to be anything particularly fancy: an unused toiletry bag, pencil case or even plastic baggies will work.

2. Have an emergency changing kit

When you're dealing with a diaper blowout situation, it's not the time to go searching for a pack of wipes. Instead, assemble an emergency changing kit ahead of time by bundling a change of baby clothes, a fresh diaper, plenty of wipes and hand sanitizer in a bag you can quickly grab. We're partial to pop-top wipes that don't dry out or get dirty inside the diaper bag.

3. Simplify bottle prep

Organization isn't just being able to find what you need, but also having what you need. For formula-feeding on the go, keep an extra bottle with the formula you need measured out along with water to mix it up. You never know when your outing will take longer than expected—especially with a baby in the mix!

4. Get resealable snacks

When getting out with toddlers and older kids, snacks are the key to success. Still, it isn't fun to constantly dig crumbs out of the bottom of your diaper bag. Our editors love pouches with resealable caps and snacks that come in their own sealable containers. Travel-sized snacks like freeze-dried fruit crisps or meal-ready pouches can get an unfair reputation for being more expensive, but that isn't the case with the budget-friendly Comforts line.

5. Keep a carabiner on your keychain

You'll think a lot about what your child needs for an outing, but you can't forget this must-have: your keys. Add a carabiner to your keychain so you can hook them onto a loop inside your diaper bag. Trust us when we say it's a much better option than dumping out the bag's contents on your front step to find your house key!

6. Bundle your essentials

If your diaper bag doubles as your purse (and we bet it does) you're going to want easy access to your essentials, too. Dedicate a smaller storage bag of your diaper bag to items like your phone, wallet and lip balm. Then, when you're ready to transfer your items to a real purse, you don't have to look for them individually.

7. Keep wipes in an outer compartment

Baby wipes aren't just for diaper changes: They're also great for cleaning up messy faces, wiping off smudges, touching up your makeup and more. Since you'll be reaching for them time and time again, keep a container of sensitive baby wipes in an easily accessible outer compartment of your bag.

Another great tip? Shop the Comforts line on www.comfortsforbaby.com to find premium baby products for a fraction of competitors' prices. Or, follow @comfortsforbaby for more information!

This article was sponsored by The Kroger Co. Thank you for supporting the brands that supporting Motherly and mamas.

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