Having a baby born sick or premature is one of the hardest things a family can go through. The shock of a difficult delivery, the long hours sat by their baby’s side hoping for the best.
SNUG has a dedicated unit peer support worker who is there to offer one to one advice and family support, helping them to cope with the emotional challenges that a long stay in hospital brings.
With the support of the fabulous businesses and parents in Exeter, SNUG have funded the cost of brand new fold away camp beds for Exeter’s low dependency. This is brilliant news as it enables more parents than ever before to sleep on the unit next to their babies at night. Great news for parents and babies alike!
Each week SNUG takes Hearty soup and bread to the parents staying on the unit. This helps breast feeding mothers keep up their strength and gives fathers one less thing to worry about. Many of our parents have to travel long distances to see their baby’s and can suffer financial hardship because of it.
Skin to skin care is so important for both parent and baby. SNUG have recently provided the unit with electronic kangaroo care chairs, enabling families to have long comfortable cuddles with their precious little ones. The chairs recline backwards into a relaxed position. The chairs are the first of their kind in the hospital and we are sure many families will benefit from them.
Many Mothers can give birth quite quickly and without warning. Often they are still in a state of shock when their baby is first admitted. This year SNUG has provided comfort bags to every parent who gets admitted to the unit. These bags have been lovingly decorated by our sewers and inside they contain everything a new parent needs. Wash kits, tissues, moisturiser (for sore hands from alcohol gel) and snack to keep up strength a small soft toy for their new arrival. We call them comfort bags because they bring a touch of homeliness to what can feel like a very clinical environment. Most of all, it lets parents know that we care!
The intensive and special care wards can be tough environments for parents. Families are frequently exposed to life saving and invasive procedures. With the help of a local producer, SNUG has recently developed a guided meditation audio for parents to listen to as they sit along side their baby. This helps Mum’s and Dad’s to relax, taking their attention away from the bleeping monitors and helping them to focus on their little one cues and movements.
This year SNUG have been working on a brand new library project enabling neonatal families to read to their baby’s on the unit. We are in the process of developing a book tracker scheme so parents can collect minature certificates as special keepsakes from their early weeks and moths together. Reading to these very small baby’s helps to sooth and reassure them and helps to promote the bonding process,