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9th annual Community Baby Shower to collect essential items for mom & babies


Thu, Mar 29th 2018 01:25 pm
Monthlong event designed to give families strong start in life; now launched at John R. Oishei Children's Hospital
The United Way of Buffalo & Erie County officially kicked off the ninth annual Community Baby Shower, designed to support new moms and their babies, at an event held Thursday in the New Era Pavilion at John R. Oishei Children's Hospital. The Community Baby Shower will continue through May 10.
The annual drive to collect baby supplies is a communitywide effort organized by the United Way of Buffalo & Erie County and supports mothers living in financial hardship with critical items for their young children to get a strong start in life. During the monthlong event, individuals and local companies are encouraged to host a baby shower with friends, colleagues, neighbors or family to collect essential items, including diapers, wipes, digital thermometers and baby board books.
Donations can also be dropped off at United Way headquarters at 742 Delaware Ave., Oishei Children's Hospital at 118 Ellicott St., on the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus, as well as during a live drive on April 19 at the Wegmans locations on Alberta Drive in Amherst and McKinley Drive in South Buffalo.
Financial contributions are also welcomed and will be used to purchase critical items for babies.
The constituents of three United Way-funded nonprofit agencies that serve young families will receive the donated items: Catholic Charities of Buffalo WIC program, Buffalo Prenatal Perinatal Network and the Jericho Road Community Health Center.
Michael Weiner, president and CEO of the United Way, said, "Our community is so fortunate to have a beautiful new Children's Hospital to provide the best in care for moms and babies. We know, however, that once the family is home, there can be considerable stress on parents in adjusting to new demands and expenses and in ensuring that their child's needs can be met. We are delighted that John R. Oishei Children's Hospital has joined us to support and promote the Community Baby Shower so that disadvantaged families have the things they need to get a healthy start in life."
Allegra C. Jaros, president of John R. Oishei Children's Hospital, said, "As the region's designated regional perinatal center and the only level III neonatal intensive care unit in Western New York, we are committed to providing highly specialized, quality care for our community's moms and babies, ensuring healthy outcomes for all. For those less fortunate in our community, the challenges of parenthood can be daunting. Oishei Children's Hospital and Kaleida Health are proud to partner with the United Way of Buffalo & Erie County for the annual community baby shower, ensuring that all new moms and families in Western New York have the essential baby items they need to give their child a head start in life. Thanks to the generosity of Western New Yorkers, this year's communitywide initiative is poised to help even more moms and babies, securing for them a better, brighter and healthier future."
The Baby Shower was created as a way to give moms and their babies living in financial hardship a stronger, healthier start in life. Each year, more than 5,000 babies are born into poverty and are at higher risk of health issues due to a lack of prenatal care. Each week, eight babies are born to women receiving no or late prenatal care; 21 are born pre-term; 15 are low birth weight; and one will not survive to reach 1 year of age.
More than 6,000 local families have been supported since the Community Baby Shower began.
About The United Way
For more information about the United Way of Buffalo & Erie County, visit www.uwbec.org.

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