National Agencies Unveil Upstate's March of Dimes NICU Family Support Bright Space for Siblings
March of Dimes and the Bright Horizons Foundation for children unveiled a new Bright Space for families and siblings at Greenville Hospital System Children's Hospital on June 6th, 2012., ,
Greenville, South Carolina, June 11, 2012 - Families with a newborn in the Bryan Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at Greenville Hospital System Children’s Hospital have a new Bright Space to play and have fun, thanks to an innovative partnership with the March of Dimes and the Bright Horizons Foundation for Children. A ribbon cutting event on June 6, 2012, marked the official opening of the NICU Family Support Bright Space for Siblings.
“This Bright Space will allow families to be together and support each other,” said David Lissy, CEO of Bright Horizons Family Solutions. “We hope it will maintain a sense of normalcy for siblings and families of NICU babies.”
Bright Spaces, the signature program of Bright Horizons Foundation, creates warm, enriching playrooms in community agencies that give children and families in crisis a special place to gather as a family and have fun together. The Bright Space unveiled on June 6th at GHS Children’s Hospital is the first Bright Space in the Upstate and the first to be located in a NICU.
“Bright Spaces bring hope and comfort to families and children during an especially difficult time – when a baby is in neonatal intensive care. The Bright Space at Greenville is a first for the March of Dimes and we are grateful to GHS and Bright Horizons for their leadership,” said Dr. Jennifer L. Howse, president of the March of Dimes.
In addition to serving as a gathering place for families, the Bright Space at GHS Children’s Hospital will offer hope and inspiration through beautiful photography and inspiring quotes mounted on the walls. It also will include special materials for siblings with a particular focus on pretend play involving baby dolls, home living and medical play.
“Having a baby in the NICU is stressful for the entire family,” said Dr. William Schmidt, medical director of GHS Children’s Hospital. “This Bright Space will offer the 700 families who enter our NICU every year a comfortable place to play and simply experience the joy of being a child or parent during a difficult time in their lives.”
The March of Dimes chose GHS Children’s Hospital as the site of the first NICU Bright Space because of its longstanding relationship with the organization. GHS was the first site in the nation to pilot the March of Dimes NICU Family Support project in 2001. NICU Family Support is built on a family-centered philosophy and addresses the needs of parents, siblings and extended family throughout the baby’s hospitalization, during the transition home, and in the event of a newborn death. The materials developed at GHS through that program are now being used in March of Dimes NICU Family Support sites throughout the country.
About Bright Horizons Family Solutions
Bright Horizons Family Solutions is the world’s leading provider of employer-sponsored child care, early education and work/life solutions. The company operates child care and early education centers across the United States, Europe and Canada. The Bright Horizons Foundation for Children was founded in 1999 to help forward the vision of Bright Horizons Family Solutions to brighten the lives of children, youth, and families in crisis. Bright Spaces is a program of the Foundation, creating dedicated play areas in homeless shelters and community agencies. There are now more than 250 Bright Spaces located in shelters in more than 35 states around the country and Europe, serving thousands of children each year. More information is at www.brighthorizonsfoundation.org.
About the March of Dimes
Each year, the South Carolina Chapter of the March of Dimes invests in mission initiatives statewide, including research grants and local community services. Through these program services, the March of Dimes works to prevent birth defects and infant death, reduce South Carolina’s premature birth rate, increase access to prenatal care, and educate health care providers and women about having full-term pregnancies and healthy babies.
The March of Dimes is the leading nonprofit organization for pregnancy and baby health. With chapters nationwide, the March of Dimes works to improve the health of babies by preventing birth defects, premature birth and infant mortality. For the latest resources and information, visit www.marchofdimes.com/southcarolina. Find us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.
About Greenville Hospital System Children’s Hospital
Greenville Hospital System’s Children’s Hospital is located in Greenville, South Carolina, and serves as the region’s source for pediatric care. It is the Upstate’s only pediatric hospital recognized by the National Association for Children’s Hospitals and Related Institutions, providing more comprehensive “whole child” care than many of the country’s major medical centers. Board-certified physicians in multiple pediatric subspecialties and experienced in advanced medicine treat more than 180,000 infants, children and adolescents each year. For more information, visit www.ghschildrens.org.