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Oct 22, 2019 3:22 PMPublication: The Southampton Press

Children's Museum Will Offer Care Packages To Expecting Mothers

The Welcome Baby care package includes diapers, wipes, bottles, and more.   COURTESY CMEE
Nov 20, 2019 11:42 AM

The Children’s Museum of the East End in Bridgehampton recently announced a new partnership with the nonprofit organization Welcome Baby, which provides low-income mothers with packages with essentials for the first four weeks of a newborn’s life: diapers, bottles, wipes and more.

The museum will now offer care packages to expectant mothers who participate in CMEE’s outreach initiatives or exemplify a need, said Paul Johnson, the marketing coordinator for CMEE.

Welcome Baby serves women and families living below the poverty line who struggle to afford the most basic essentials on an ongoing basis. Welcome Baby’s care packages have been thoughtfully created to contain the items needed to support a newborn’s healthy growth and development during the critical first month.

Each care package includes 220 diapers, wipes, rash creams, a baby carrier, bottles, a thermometer, a grooming kit, clothing, baby wash and moisturizer, swaddle blankets, pacifiers, socks and mittens.

“There’s a perception outside the community that everyone in the Hamptons is well off, but in our outreach efforts we see countless families struggling to provide basic necessities,” CMEE President Steve Long said. By partnering with Welcome Baby, the museum can offer resources to new parents that they otherwise couldn’t access or afford.

Twenty-one percent of children in the United States live in poverty, a rate that has increased annually since 2006, Mr. Johnson explained. Five million infants and toddlers live near or below the poverty line.

Juliet Fuisz and Sarah Steinhardt started Welcome Baby after giving birth to their children. Both were fortunate to have all the resources they needed to raise newborns but became aware that thousands of women give birth every day and don’t have any resources.

They created Welcome Baby to give every newborn a healthy, hygienic start to life, and give every new mom the peace of mind and confidence in knowing she can take care of many of her baby’s needs during that first critical month.

“We are honored to partner with the Children’s Museum of the East End. CMEE and Welcome Baby share the passionate belief that we must invest in our communities and provide all children and families with the resources they need to thrive,” Ms. Steinhardt said last week. “This is a dream come true for us as not only do our children love CMEE, but we also feel deeply connected to the East End community.”

So far, Welcome Baby has donated its newborn packages to NYU Langone Hospital, Mt. Sinai Hospital, and Northern Manhattan Perinatal Partnership, in New York; and Mercy Health and the Mahoning County Board of Health, in Ohio.

Since 2018, the nonprofit has distributed up to 30 Welcome Baby packages to new mothers and babies each month through hospital social workers and trained community health workers who determine which women have the greatest need.

“Working with Welcome Baby allows us to expand our outreach,” Mr. Johnson finished, adding that there is a need on the East End that is certainly overlooked.

The best way to help Welcome Baby is by making a donation. Welcome Baby is a 501(c)(3) public charity.

Each package costs about $135, and all donations go directly to paying for the items included in the box.

Donate by visiting welcomebabyusa.org and clicking on the donate page.

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