My name is Ola, mum of two beautiful girls who were born very early. My first was born at 23 weeks three years ago, with no chance of surviving, but after a very long nine months in five different hospitals, she made it home on home oxygen. My second girl was born at 29 weeks two years ago, exactly a month after starting Colourful Beginnings and had her share of the NICU journey.
My girls are my inspiration for starting Colourful Beginnings to support other families with premature/sick babies, to bring hope and love in a difficult situation. This is done by sharing stories on our social media pages, offering peer support to families and providing care packages to these families.
The purpose of the care packages is to bring about normality and essential items baby and parent can use in the first few weeks after baby is born and beyond. As we know, having a premature baby means most of the shopping hasn’t been done, and if things had been bought, those things will definitely not be appropriate for the baby.
For example, most premature babies are unable to wear clothes and when they can, their first outfit is usually for the hospital, which means when baby is discharged, the outfit has to be returned. We include things like this in the care packages we provide, helping families create a lasting memories.
The requested funds will enable us register Colourful Beginnings as a charity, which will allow us reach more people, work with more hospitals, which in return means we will be reaching more families. It will also allow us buy the necessary items we need for the care packages, especially for Christmas 2018, also allow us get a storage to store donated items.
We have received positive feedback from families and would love to do more and reach/serve more people. The only thing stopping us is funding. We are in the process of working with a level three Neonatal Unit and we hope to expand.
The project will make a huge impact as having experienced the NICU first hand, I know these types of gestures goes a long way and I would have loved to receive such, when my girls were in NICU.
In less than two years, we already have over 17,000 followers on Instagram alone, and we are receiving numerous messages on how the project has helped these families and still helping.