Stripey Stork and Surrey Heartlands Local Maternity and Neonatal System are working together to provide an essential safe place to sleep for newborn babies in families who are seeking sanctuary or refuge across Surrey.
Stripey Stork have long supported families experiencing poverty in Surrey but in recent years, Surrey has seen an increasing number of families seeking sanctuary. Surrey Heartlands has funded Stripey Stork to put together 250 baby boxes that include essential donated items for babies such as clothes, towels, toiletries and nappies in addition to providing a sturdy sleep box and mattress with bedding.
Every month around 1,000 babies are born in Surrey hospitals and when a cot or Moses basket is not an option, due to the lack of a permanent place to stay, baby boxes provide a simple, safe sleeping space, and they are easy for families to transport and pack.
Surrey Heartland’s Inclusion Midwife, Mary Clare Chapman, said:
These baby boxes will provide a brilliant boost to our families who have the highest needs as we help them to navigate the early days of settling their new baby. We want those who have very little to know that the NHS and our local partners are here for them.
The baby boxes bring an important safety element to families too. They help parents to provide an area for safe sleep for their newborn baby which is one of the key factors in reducing sudden infant deaths. We are so grateful for this resource.
Stripey Stork’s team of volunteers will pack each box which will then be delivered to key locations including the four Surrey Maternity Units and Neonatal Units, so that they are always available when needed. They will also be offered to referral partners across Surrey who are working with families who are transient or seeking refuge who may not yet have been into hospital. This new offer compliments the existing valuable support Stripey Stork already offers to Surrey families who are facing hardship.
Sleep boxes have been used for over 80 years in Scandinavia as a way of offering a safe place for babies to sleep and these boxes adhere to the first British Safety Standard for baby boxes, so families and professionals can be assured of the safety and quality. They are also 100% recyclable. Stripey Stork place high importance on the safety and quality of items they pass out, wanting families to feel as though they are receiving a gift, not a handout.