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First Touch NNU in Tooting – April 2019

First Touch NNU in Tooting – April 2019

First Touch

Sarah Collins of First Touch NNU in Tooting on the little things they do that make a huge difference for parents of premature babies.

The UK and the world have gone crazy with baby love! Our congratulations to the Duke and Duchess of Sussex on the safe arrival of their beautiful son, Archie.

The arrival of a new baby is usually a time of joy and excitement, but for the mums and dads of the sick and premature babies at St George's neonatal unit it can also be a time of worry and anxiety. Mum might not be feeling very well herself. Mum and Dad might have had to start leave from work early and unexpectedly. They will be in shock that their parenthood started earlier than expected. They will be concerned for their tiny and fragile baby.

We can't take the worry away, but we can do our best to make things just that little bit easier for families. We provide coffee, tea, squash, soup, herbal teas, fruit, breakfast porridge and snacks in both of the family rooms on the wards. This means that families don't have to go very far from their baby to take a little break and revive themselves, and they don't have to worry about spending money on refreshments.

First Touch

If they need some fresh air we have The First Touch Garden at the entrance to the hospital where they can sit and and take some time out. We provide accommodation within the hospital for families who live a long way away or for families who have a very sick baby, possibly following surgery. Each week we provide new magazines so families can keep up with developments outside of the hospital, and we have provided free Wifi on the unit for a number of years. Our next venture is to give sibling packs to all the siblings of babies at the nnu, so they can feel special too.

If you are the friend of parents who have a poorly baby and want to support them, we found a helpful post from a few years back on the HuffPost site that you might find useful. 

In the meantime, we are wondering if we will see a marked increase in the number of little ones named 'Archie' among the hospital's smallest patients in Tooting!

To find out more, please visit our website and follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

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