Sacramento Save the Date for March for Babies 2017

March of Dimes to Hold Its Biggest Annual Fundraiser to Help Babies Be Born Healthy

Sacramento | Wednesday, March 29, 2017

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Thousands of families and local business leaders will join together on April 29 at the California State Capitol for the 2017 March for Babies presented by Sutter Health, the nation’s oldest fundraising walk, to support the March of Dimes. Funds raised through March for Babies help in the fight against premature birth, now the leading global cause of death for children under five years old. In the United States, one in ten babies is born preterm which ranks among the worst in high-resource countries. Babies who survive often face serious and lifelong health problems, including breathing problems, vision loss, cerebral palsy and intellectual delays.

The March for Babies campaign has special meaning for the McDermott family, this year’s Sacramento March for Babies Ambassador Family. Shelly and Andrew McDermott were excited about becoming parents in 2012 and looking forward to starting their family.  But their baby Jack arrived unexpectedly at only 24 weeks gestation, weighing 1 pound 8 ounces.  He spent his first 150 days fighting for life in a hospital Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) undergoing multiple blood transfusions and procedures. Jack is now a smart, strong kindergartner; but due to complications from his early birth, he continues treatments for visions and intestinal complications. The McDermott family is thankful for the care provided by the NICU staff and the March of Dimes research, education and breakthroughs that make it possible for Jack and other babies to survive and thrive.

            “As the 2017 March for Babies chair I have the privilege of supporting the March of Dimes in its efforts to ensure all babies are born healthy,” said Jennifer Kent, Director of the California Department of Health Care Services. “We are proud to join the March of Dimes in the fight against premature birth, one of the leading causes of infant mortality.  Every contribution counts, so please join our DHCS employees and support March for Babies.  With your help, we can raise awareness and increase funds that support the lifesaving work of the March of Dimes.”

            On-site registration begins on Saturday, April 29 at 7:30 a.m. with the 3-mile walk kicking off at 8:30 a.m. Sacramento residents can sign up today at to start a team with co-workers, family or friends; or make a donation to help more babies get a healthy start in life.

            March for Babies is the largest annual fundraising event of the March of Dimes, but it also is a special celebration for many families. There is a sense of community among families who have experienced having a baby in the NICU. These families have experienced the roller coaster of emotions — from heart wrenching to joy.

“March for Babies is a memorable and rewarding event for the whole family,” says Celia Wheeler, Executive Director of Market Development Sacramento Valley Market. “We celebrate children and parents who experienced the Newborn Intensive Care Unit (NICU) or special care nursery.  We’ll recognize these families throughout the day with a Superhero Sprint for kids, complete with a purple cape, a symbolic lei for mom and dad and loads of fun in the kids’ zone. And, for the first time, participants will have the opportunity to walk through our Memory Mile and visit our unforgettable March for Babies Butterfly Garden. Those who have experienced loss will find a meaningful way to remember their baby,” she says.

Premature birth is the leading cause of death among babies in the United States. It affects about 380,000 babies — that’s 1 in 10 — born each year, including 41,560 in California. Funds raised by March for Babies in Sacramento support March of Dimes programs that provide comfort and support for moms and babies as well as innovative research, including 32 research grants totaling almost $9 million in California alone, to find the unknown causes of premature birth and birth defects.

The March of Dimes is the leading nonprofit organization for pregnancy and baby health. For more than 75 years, moms and babies have benefited from March of Dimes research, education, vaccines, and breakthroughs. For the latest resources and health information, visit our websites and If you have been affected by prematurity or birth defects, visit our community to find comfort and support. For detailed national, state and local perinatal statistics, visit Find us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

The 2017 March for Babies is sponsored nationally by Kmart, Famous Footwear, Macy’s, Cigna, HCA, and regional sponsor Publix Super Markets, Inc. Sacramento March for Babies is sponsored by Sutter Health, Hanson Bridgett, Kaiser Permanente, Molina Healthcare, Wells Fargo, Blue Diamond Growers, Capital City Loan & Jewelry, Delta Dental, First Tech, SMUD, UC Davis Children’s Hospital, Western Health Advantage, and 106.5 The End.

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About March of Dimes

March of Dimes leads the fight for the health of all moms and babies. We support research, lead programs and provide education and advocacy so that every baby can have the best possible start. Building on a successful 80-year legacy of impact and innovation, we empower every mom and every family.

Visit or for more information. Visit for comfort and support. Find us on Facebook and follow us on Instagram and Twitter.