No, i am not talking about that dodgy 90's TV show. I'm talking about baby changing facilities and dads. It isn't the biggest gripe of all... but it has meant i have had to change my sons smelly botty on a bit of green near a car park and once actually in the car!
Historically baby changing facilities have been located in women's toilets or the rooms have even been labelled as 'Mum and baby changing'. If you read my post on it being a mums world you will know that as dads, we can occasionally get forgotten about. It's definitely much better these days with changing facilities being available in disabled toilets which are unisex. But am i the only one who doesn't find it very pleasant to be changing a nappy in a dirty public toilet? I know what i am actually doing is wiping poo off my babies bottom, but it still feels wrong.
The disabled loos/changing rooms are rarely kept very clean (like most public loos), they often have adult pee on the floor, the changing table opens at the wrong angle and you're trying to manoeuvre over the basin/hand dryer to actually change the nappy. They are not nappy changing friendly. And they're supposed to be NAPPY CHANGING ROOMS!!
So when, as a parent, you experience a good changing room, it's the quite possibly the highlight moment of that particular day and you instantly tell all of your parent friends about the experience (Oh god... am i really typing this? Am i THAT sad?). But it's true. They are so rare that a good one stands out.
To me, a good changing room consists of:
- No actual toilet.
- It is cleaned regularly and has anti-bac gel available (always pack your own just in case!)
- The room is a specific baby changing space.
- The changing table opens length ways, so as your baby lays down you are at the base, like you would be at home. No one enjoys changing a nappy with their baby laying the wrong way and you having to try and position yourself whilst sorting the changing equipment out and holding them down.
The Dad Network has been working with Sudocrem to raise the profile of this issue. This has all lead to the addition of a 'Dad category' for the Care & Protect Baby Changing Room Awards. I mean, how cool is it that in 2016/17 we have an award for the best baby changing room?! I only say that because i feel the good ones really do need to be congratulated!
The awards team are looking for your nominations, Dads! So if you have had a great experience, click here then select baby changing room awards and from there you can submit your nomination. It could be your local cafe, a soft play or even a John Lewis (i love the John Lewis facilities where i live)... make sure you nominate your favourite today and all those that enter will also be put into a prize draw for the chance to win one of several prizes, including a short break at Knoll House. Also, the winning baby changing rooms will receive their very own engraved plaque to hang on the wall for you to see as you wipe that dirty little bum!