Campaign raises over 10000 tiny hats for tiny babies in East Africa
“Welcome to the world. Hope this will keep you warm.” Those were the words accompanying one of over 10,000 tiny hats received by the Preterm Birth Initiative (PTBi) East Africa following the “Tiny hats for tiny babies” campaign.
Speaking at annual PTBi Symposium in San Francisco – California, PTBi East Africa Principal Investigator Dr Dilys Walker said the hats came from 47 States in the United States of America and five African countries.
“The initial target was 1117 to symbolise November 17, which happens to be World Prematurity Day,” Dr Walker recounted recently. “However, when the hats started coming in, we could not imagine how the campaign had touched hundreds of people. And before we knew it we had surpassed our target.”
Tiny hats for tiny babies was birthed out of a visit to East Africa over a year ago by two UCSF staffers Elizabeth Butrick and Melanie Wise when they noticed that so many newborns including preemies undergoing Kangaroo care did not have hats on their heads to keep them warm.
It was this concern that led PTBi-East Africa into partnering with Warm Up America, a partnership that has thousands of good samaritans in America and five African countries donate the hats. Soon the hats will find their way to East Africa and distributed to hospitals under the PTBi study in Uganda, Rwanda and Kenya.