Home > Other Voluntary Work > Volunteering to Help Premature Babies

Volunteering to Help Premature Babies

By: Leigh Sexton - Updated: 24 Jun 2018 | comments*Discuss
 
Volunteering Craft Premature Babies

The life of a premature baby is fragile and stressed, and the family of such a baby are likely to also be extremely stressed and anxious. Physically, mentally and emotionally, the tiny babies and those who love them need all the help they can get. Fortunately there are a whole host of ways that you can volunteer to help.

Craft Volunteering

A large number of UK charities and organisations offer the opportunity to sew, knit or crochet clothing and other items needed to care for premie babies. Items needed range from premature clothes and blankets through to tiny burial outfits to give those little ones who don’t survive a suitable and loving garment in which to be seen for the last time by their grieving relatives.

The items are made for the charity and then collected to be laundered so that they are free of all infection and irritation before being taken to special care baby units.

This opportunity requires you to have the necessary craft skills, to be able to work to a pattern and to either take your items to a depot or post them to an agreed address for onward transmission.

Courier Volunteering

Several motorcycle groups and charities have volunteer roles, transporting urgently needed donor breast milk, and blood, to neonatal units where the milk is given to premature babies to boost their immune systems and the blood provides transfusions for mothers who have complications resulting from their labour.

In rural areas in particular, the regular provision of donated breast milk can make a huge difference to a baby’s survival by reducing the risk of infection. It gives the tiny babies optimum nutrition as well as reducing their vulnerability to infections and viruses. A mother who isn’t producing milk may be very stressed about her baby’s health and that can, in turn, make her ill, so ensuring that premies get good milk helps not just the infant but his or her immediate family to feel that the best possible care is being taken of the little one.

Some mothers who lose their own babies go on producing milk by breast pump and donating it to others as part of the process of coming to terms with their grief, so the provision of courier services may be helping parents who have lost a baby just as much as parents who are struggling with the complex and demanding medical routines of a neo-natal unit.

This opportunity to volunteer requires a car or, more often, a motorcycle, a full clean licence, a good knowledge of your local area and the willingness to get up and go at any hour of the day or night. Training and support and special clothing, and packaging for the medical supplies, are provided by several charities to do this work.

Support Group Volunteering

Over 80,000 babies are born too soon, too small or ill in the UK every year. Local family support groups help parents cope with the stress of having a baby in a neo-natal unit or recently returned home from one. They also support parents who have lost a premature baby and they work with wider family such as other children and grandparents who often struggle to cope with their feelings and don’t know how to act for the best around a premature baby.

This opportunity requires you to pass a Criminal Records Bureau check, to be or have been a parent (not necessarily of a premature baby) and to be willing to work with your local community. Training and support are provided by several charities to do this work.

Premature Baby Cuddle Scheme

Studies showing the benefits of human physical contact on newborn babies has prompted some neo natal units to recruit volunteer "baby cuddlers". While parents are generally around to provide this vital 'service' - there are times when some respite is needed. Occasionally too, a parent will be unable to cuddle a newborn because they are unwell themselves, this is where volunteer cuddlers come in. Their role is simply to hold an unhappy baby, providing a human touch and perhaps singing or talking gently to reassure them.

Where Can I Find a Cuddle Programme?

We don't have a list of cuddle programmes in the UK, so please contact your nearest premature baby unit, or NHS trust to find out more.

You might also like...
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice..
[Add a Comment]
Would love 2 help in the Edinburgh area
Evie - 24-Jun-18 @ 11:03 AM
I could like to volunteer to cuddle a babies in Leicester area
Tish - 23-Jun-18 @ 10:39 AM
Hi, I’d love to volunteer to cuddle babies. Could you please advise on how I can go about this? I live close to London and Watford, I’m happy to travel as needed. Many thanks!
Jade - 22-Jun-18 @ 6:29 PM
I would like to offer to become a cuddle care ! I live in Portsmouth.Not sure how to in roll in this
Scooby - 20-Jun-18 @ 2:58 PM
I would love to be a volunteer for baby cuddler
Zid - 16-Jun-18 @ 12:17 PM
I would love to look after and cuddle newborn babies. But I don't know were to begin
Suiee - 17-May-18 @ 6:14 PM
How do I find out where there are cuddle programs near me and how do I apply to volunteer??
Kimi - 1-May-18 @ 11:48 AM
Hi I live in London Ontario. I’m a mother of 5 and would love to snuggle babies for babies that are born addicted please let me know if there’s any programs in London Ontario thanks
Mel - 30-Apr-18 @ 7:02 PM
I would love to be able to help I have had children in nicu and can relate to some of the mothers. I know I can be a strong suporter to mother and child I have a level one in health and social care worked in nurseries plus I have had tones of life experience I would do this in a heart beat.I have lots of free time and can do all night or all day if need be.please let me know the steps to doing this thank you.
Crissy - 13-Apr-18 @ 6:52 PM
Leah - Your Question:
Hello, I'm 46years old with 3 grown up children and a 3 year old granddaughter. I live in Denmead Hampshire, with my husband and I am & have been a primary teacher for the past 14 years. I would really like to get involved with voluntary cuddle a baby. My closest hospital is QA in Cosham is this who I need to contact? Many thanks Leah Martin

Our Response:
Yes your local hospital will be able to tell you whether they have a cuddle programme or if there's any other way to help with premature babies.
VoluntaryWorker - 27-Feb-18 @ 11:51 AM
Hello, I'm 46years old with 3 grown up children and a 3 year old granddaughter. Ilive in Denmead Hampshire, with my husband and I am & have been a primary teacher for the past 14 years. I would really like to get involved with voluntary cuddle a baby. My closest hospital is QA in Cosham is this who I need to contact? Many thanks Leah Martin
Leah - 24-Feb-18 @ 4:43 PM
I would love to be a cuddle workervoluntary. I live in chatham not far away from Maritime hospital. I have 2 childten
Alicja Chmura - 19-Feb-18 @ 10:03 PM
Hey! I drive in n18 london. Can cover support in north london andhertfordshire. Not central london though im afraid.
Carly - 19-Feb-18 @ 9:52 AM
Kayleigh - Your Question:
I would love to give my free time to be a cuddler I’m a mother of 4, I also have experience as a care assistant, I live 5 minuets from the hospital in Coventry.

Our Response:
As the article states: We don't have a list of cuddle programmes in the UK, so please contact your nearest premature baby unit, or NHS trust to find out more.
VoluntaryWorker - 1-Dec-17 @ 3:15 PM
I would love to give my free time to be a cuddler I’m a mother of 4, I also have experience as a care assistant, I live 5 minuets from the hospital in Coventry.
Kayleigh - 30-Nov-17 @ 1:12 PM
rachel - Your Question:
Is there anything I can do in Glasgow area c

Our Response:
We don't have details of specific organisations requiring volunteers for this. Please contact your local NHS and primary care trusts for further information.
VoluntaryWorker - 22-Nov-17 @ 1:00 PM
Is there anything I can do in Glasgow area c
rachel - 18-Nov-17 @ 2:40 PM
I would love to be involved in anything like this. Even older disabled etc children young adults.
Kimi - 2-Nov-17 @ 6:09 AM
Is there anu cuddle schrmes in the northwest area
Nettie - 24-Oct-17 @ 11:35 PM
Hi just wondered if there is a cuddle scheme in bristol at all? Thanks susan
Susan - 19-Oct-17 @ 8:56 AM
Hello, I live in Croydon and was wondering if there are any programmes around, where you can volunteer to hug drug addicted babies? I know there are plenty of these in America, I told my grandmother about it and she loves the idea about being able to help these poor little bundles fight their battle against drug addiction.
Anna - 11-Oct-17 @ 5:24 PM
Janey - Your Question:
Hi is there a new birn cuddling scheme in Manchester

Our Response:
We don't have a list of cuddle programmes in the UK, so please contact your nearest premature baby unit, or NHS trust to find out more.
VoluntaryWorker - 18-Sep-17 @ 2:02 PM
Hi is there a new birn cuddling scheme in Manchester
Janey - 16-Sep-17 @ 4:45 PM
Sammy- Your Question:
Would love to get involved with a cuddle care program I live in Portsmouth so close to a few hospital would be perfect for me x could some please help me find out more about this xv

Our Response:
We don't have a list of cuddle programmes in the UK, so please contact your nearest premature baby unit, or NHS trust to find out more.
VoluntaryWorker - 12-Sep-17 @ 11:20 AM
I live between Portsmouth and chichester, so close to a few hospitals and would love to help with the cuddle care program
Bernie - 12-Sep-17 @ 7:56 AM
Would love to get involved with a cuddle care program I live in Portsmouth so close to a few hospital would be perfect for me x could some please help me find out more about this xv
Sammy - 10-Sep-17 @ 4:17 PM
Amal - Your Question:
I live in London and would love to volunteer on the baby cuddling program. What are the locations in London?

Our Response:
We don't have a list of cuddle programmes in the UK, so please contact your nearest premature baby unit, or NHS trust to find out more.
VoluntaryWorker - 7-Sep-17 @ 12:30 PM
I'm interested in cuddle care in Peterborough area can you help me find Out how please
Rachyrach - 6-Sep-17 @ 8:11 PM
D - Your Question:
Hi, I was wondering if there's any cuddle care programmes in the North London area. I have a son of my own and felt cuddles really benefitted both of us. I would love to help these little angels through cuddles.

Our Response:
We don't have a list of cuddle programmes in the UK, so please contact your nearest premature baby unit, or NHS trust to find out more.
VoluntaryWorker - 6-Sep-17 @ 11:45 AM
Annie - Your Question:
Hi, my mother is interested in knitting for premature babies,can you give me some information how she can do this?Kind regards Annmarie Black

Our Response:
Here are some useful knitting resources for premature babies. You should contact your local neo natal unit directly to see what they will accept/what they need and if there are any organisations coordinating this local to you:
BBC Stoke Ray of Hope
Bliss Charity
Knit for Life
VoluntaryWorker - 6-Sep-17 @ 11:45 AM
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice...
Title:
(never shown)
Firstname:
(never shown)
Surname:
(never shown)
Email:
(never shown)
Nickname:
(shown)
Comment:
Validate:
Enter word:
Latest Comments
Further Reading...
Our Most Popular...
Add to my Yahoo!
Add to Google
Stumble this
Add to Twitter
Add To Facebook
RSS feed
You should seek independent professional advice before acting upon any information on the VoluntaryWorker website. Please read our Disclaimer.