3rd March 2020

Supporting our hospitals

Greg Johnston

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We now provide parent bags to the SCBU at the Cumberland Infirmary

We are thrilled to announce that we now supply our parent bags to the Special Care Baby Unit at the Cumberland Infirmary in Carlisle!

After years of providing the bags to parents at West Cumberland Hospital and getting lots of incredible feedback we are so proud to have now committed to provide the same support for parents who are admitted to Special Care with their baby in Carlisle. The bags are a Godsend for parents (their words not ours!) and we know that the items inside make a huge difference for the parents, and their new little ones…

Inside each bag we provide:

  • A pair of Miniboos  (thank you to Cuski  for their support and personalisation!) – These are incredible little things. Made from bamboo they are specially designed for premature babies in incubators. One of the miniboos stays with baby, the other is with mum, put inside her top. Every few hours the miniboos are swapped. This means baby can smell mum, and mum can smell baby. Not only is this incredibly comforting to the baby, but it helps to stimulate the production of mum’s milk. Then, mum can express milk (using the machine we donated to the ward a while ago!) and the baby can be fed from their mum! Amazing!!
  • A Team Evie water bottle – The staff will continually tell mum to drink plenty of water while she is expressing milk, so we thought having a bottle on hand would help!
  • A Jomanda Sheep  (thank you to Jomanda for their support!) – A beautiful cuddly lamb, perfect for being held by tiny fingers, and a fitting animal due to Evie’s best cuddly friend being a lamb!
  • A pair of premature baby socks (thanks to Babyprem for their support!) – One thing a parent preparing for their child’s birth will not be ready for if their child is born early is how tiny their feet are! We have included a couple of pairs of tiny socks so the babies can have lovely toasty feet!
  • A Team Evie notebook – We know from our experience how handy having a pen and paper available is when you are in hospital with your child. Writing endless lists and writing down what you want to ask the doctor…hopefully having the notepad will reduce a little of the stress…
  • An Adult Colouring Book and Felt Tip Pens -Parents who have a child in SCBU spend hours sat beside their incubator or cot, and it is a very worrying time. Providing these resources to help distract and calm parents has been advised by Bliss and we are proud to include them in our Parent Bags!

When we were delivering the bags to the unit we were privileged to hand the first one out to a family and met the lovely Dave and Victoria and their beautiful son Silus. After meeting the family and giving them the bag we were touched to receive a lovely message from Victoria:

“What beautiful, amazing people. To hear what you have been through and to see what you are doing for so many is amazing. To receive the parent pack you provide was a godsend in itself. The little miniboo honestly made me feel like I could breath again. To know that if baby remained away from us we had a piece of him close and he had a piece of us was so reassuring. Thank you so much for being who you are and for taking something so painful and creating something so beautiful from it xxx”

We are thrilled to expand the support we offer to parents of babies in Special Care across our region, and incredibly proud to make such a difference to so many families. If you would like to donate to help us keep funding the SCBU bags (each bags costs £30 to provide) you can by visiting our online store.