Parents also need support. The Rotunda Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) is the first in Ireland to introduce the ‘Beads of Courage’ programme.
First launched in the United States in 2005, the aim of Initiative is to support parents and involve them in their babies journey in order to enhance positive coping strategies and demonstrate their courage and achievements as a family during their time in the NICU.
When premature babies are enrolled in the programme parents are given a bead bag, a piece of string and beads that spell out their babies name along with a bead journal to document their baby’s journey in the NICU.
The journal incorporates procedures, treatments and milestones that babies endure when born prematurely. Colourful beads are then given to parents, celebrating their baby’s progress, no matter how small, each representing the different procedures, treatments and milestones.
This initiative is provided free of charge through the support of the Rotunda Foundation.