July 11th, 2017
A newborn baby is a miracle that deserves celebration. It’s a time to shower the new baby with love, snuggles, and gifts. At the Ronald McDonald House Charities Eastern Wisconsin, our newborns are welcomed in all shapes and sizes, from preemies to full-term babies with life-threatening illnesses. We help our families celebrate this exciting time by surprising parents with a newborn bag packed with necessities and fun extras for their new bundle of joy.
The newborn bags families receive are packed with great items donated by our amazing donors. Beautiful tote bags showing the RMHC logo (provided from an RMHC Global corporate partner, Thirty-One Gifts), are hand-packed with essentials like diapers, wipes, and baby toiletries. However, the additional items are what makes these bags so special, including handmade quilts and loveys, button-up sleepers and onesies, journals and photo albums, and board books. Soft stuffed animals are also placed in each newborn bag. To finish our bags, volunteers handwrite notes congratulating the parents on their newest addition.
The Newborn Bag program has been running at the House nearly four years. Through feedback from our guest families and an abundance of newborn donations, the program took off once we realized there was a special need to support families of these tiniest patients. Continued donations from our Wish List fill the gaps and keep this program expanding and our tote bags overflowing!
As House Managers who work with our families on a daily basis, we really see the affect this program has on our families. Even though their stay at the hospital is unlike most arrivals of a baby, Newborn Bags provide a bit of normalcy when celebrating their little one. Both the families and RMHC staff continue to be overwhelmed by the generosity of our donors. Thank you for helping us keep families close!
By Jessica Erkfitz and Megan Reuter