5km run every day for 107 days consecutively to raise money for SSNAP.
"On the afternoon of the 18th of September Kayleigh & myself found ourselves sat in the maternity unit at the JR hospital in Oxford getting told that our baby was arriving... to say we were shocked is a understatement given Kayleigh was only 24weeks pregnant.
Around 2pm the next day a Rory was born at 24 weeks +6days gestation and weighing 810grams. We were told very early on that assuming everything goes well, we could expect to be there until around Rory's due date which was the 3rd of Jan 2023. Well it turns out the Dr's guessed right and we all went home on the 3rd of Jan, a 107 days after Rory was born.
During our time in hospital we were surrounded by many amazing people across the whole of the neonatal ward.... Nurses, Doctors, Consultants, Psychologists, Neonatal Outreach Team, Ward clerks, Breastfeeding support, Physiotherapy, Occupational Therapy, Speech and Language Therapy and then there was SSNAP.
The role that SSNAP played, initially might not have seemed clear to me but over time I came to realise how much amazing work they do for not only the parents of babies on the unit but also work to help the unit with so much.
SSNAP fund many things that make hospital life a little easier for families on the unit, but also many things to make the unit itself a better for staff and medical care.
Family rooms stocked with fridges/microwaves/sofas/hot and cold drinks/breast pumps (this gives you somewhere other than the ward to do expressing)/toys/books for family with young children.
They have staff coming around the unit regularly offering little snacks and treats. This might not sound much, but when you are sat staring at an incubator for hours on end and someone comes along with a bar of chocolate making sure you are okay and just lending an ear for you, it's a greatly appreciated.
A really big thing for Kayleigh and myself was having a reclining chair by the incubator and cot for when we were doing skin to skin and feeds. Yeah the NHS can't provide comfy chairs for parents to sit in and do skin to skin care/breast feeding etc. SSNAP buy them to make life on the unit a little more bearable.
SSNAP are still supporting us with post hospital life with with Little Ssnaplings, which are parent and baby/toddler groups for people who have spent time on the Neonatal unit. Its been really nice to go to these groups with other parents who have had similar experiences and understand the transition from hospital to home.
We have also come to learn that SSNAP also
- Fund buying medical equipment for the unit.... they work with the unit and purchase new equipment that allows the unit to trial new equipment that the unit could not fund. This can be the latest incubators/ventilator or double width cots so twin babies can be together.
- Provide staff support ranging from additional training to mental health wellbeing.
- Funding research into neonatal care.
If you can donate any thing at all to help fund the amazing work SSNAP do, that would be amazing.
Lets get running!"