Holding a baby for the first time is a special feeling known to many moms, but not all. For parents of sick or premature babies, it may be days, if not months, before they can cuddle their child. About 380,000 babies are born premature each year, with families yearning to reach out and touch them.
On April 29th thousands of these families will come together in our community to prevent birth defects, premature birth, and other infant health problems in the March for Babies. They have formed Family Teams of relatives, friends and neighbors joined in the March of Dimes biggest annual fundraiser. For many, March for Babies is one of their family’s annual traditions, a time for celebration, remembrance, and hope.
“We invite families and all those who love babies to join us in March for Babies,” said Alexis Hull, March of Dimes Family Teams Chair. “Last year, we had 20 Family Teams participate, and we’re looking forward to an even bigger turnout this year. Whether you want to celebrate a baby in your life, or to honor a baby who did not survive, let’s walk together. This movement is bringing us closer to the day when every baby is born healthy and strong.”
March for Babies is the largest annual fundraising event for the March of Dimes. Treasure Coast residents can sign up to participate at marchforbabies.org/event/treasurecoastsouth, start a team with co-workers, family or friends, or donate to help babies survive and thrive.
On-site registration begins at 7:30 am with the 2-mile walk kicking off at 8:30 am at Indian Riverside Park.
“Participation in March for Babies will provide a memorable and rewarding event for the whole family. We will celebrate children and parents who experienced the Newborn Intensive Care Unit (NICU) or special care nursery. We will recognize these families throughout the day with a Superhero Sprint for kids sponsored by St Lucie Medical Center, complete with a purple cape, a symbolic lei for mom and dad and loads of fun in the kids’ zone. We may even have a few special superhero visitors stop by!” says Matt Macon, March for Babies co-chair from FPL..
“This year for the first time, participants will have the opportunity to walk through our Memory Mile and visit our unforgettable March for Babies Memory Garden. Those who have experienced loss will find a meaningful way to remember their baby by planting a flower in our butterfly garden. We will also hold a NICU family reunion sponsored by Lawnwood Regional Medical Center, to bring together all of our NICU graduates” says Naomi Seymour, March for Babies co-chair from Lawnwood Regional.
Premature birth is the leading cause of death among babies in the United States. It affects about 380,000 babies each year, including over 22,000 in Florida. Funds raised by March for Babies in the Treasure Coast help support March of Dimes programs that provide comfort and support for moms and babies as well as innovative research to find the unknown causes of premature birth and birth defects.
The March of Dimes is the leading nonprofit organization for pregnancy and baby health. For more than 75 years, moms and babies have benefited from March of Dimes research, education, vaccines and breakthroughs. For the latest resources and health information, visit our websites marchofdimes.org and nacersano.org. If you have been affected by prematurity or birth defects, visit our shareyourstory.org community to find comfort and support. Find us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.
The 2017 March for Babies is sponsored nationally by Kmart, Famous Footwear, Macy’s, Cigna, HCA, and regional sponsor Publix Super Markets, Inc. In our community, March for Babies is sponsored by Treasure Coast Healthcare, Peter W. Bush Family Foundation, FPL, Wal-Mart Distribution Center, Bar Fusion Taphouse, All Out Training Facility, Treasure Coast Toyota, Kidz Medical, TC Palm, Southeastern Printing, and Martin Health System. Our media sponsors include All Things Treasure Coast, Boca Raton Tribune, Stuart Magazine, WAVE 92.7, Oldies 103.7, and Sunny 107.9. Also thank you to our family team supporters Wells Fargo, Fort Pierce Utilities, South Dade Neonatology, Hershey’s Chocolate, and Waste Management.