The Tygerberg Hospital Children’s Trust is making an appeal to the public to donate toiletries to mothers in its Kangaroo Mother Care (KMC) unit.

According to the Trust’s Chief Executive Jason Falken, the Hospital’s Neonatal Unit admits approximately 3 000 babies each year. Most are born underweight and weigh under 2500 grams at birth.

“The aim of KMC is to help the mother and baby bond, improve the baby’s body temperature, breathing and heart rate as well as improve breastfeeding. KMC also shortens the duration of the baby’s hospitalisation,” he said to IOL. “Many mothers are from rural areas. Some mothers were transferred in an emergency situation to Tygerberg to have their baby delivered, while others have been in hospital since lockdown started, without being able to go home and get clothes and toiletries.”

Falken also added that all the mothers in the unit are facing the same problem of having little to no clothing and toiletries with them currently.

“Many mothers feel ashamed of their appearance as they do not have clean clothes and toiletries to properly care for themselves. This affects their emotional well-being. Their families are unable to assist in bringing clothes and toiletries.”

Those who are able to donate are encouraged to donate the following items:

– soap

– washing powder

– shampoo

– conditioner

– face cloth

– maternity sanitary pads

– ladies deodorant

– clothing

– maternity wear

– snack packs

“Unfortunately, due to travel restrictions and restricted hospital visiting policies, to curb the spread of Covid-19 many fathers and grandparents have not been able to see their babies,” Falken said. “This has also limited the social support usually provided by partners and parents, further affecting the mothers’ emotional state.”

More information can be found here: https://www.tygerbergchildren.org.za

Picture: Pixabay

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