Hearts for NICU Mums on Mother’s Day

DSC08956The Heart Campaign, part of our community work, is getting bigger and bigger each year. For Mother’s Day 2017 we hope to get a heart to every mum in a NICU in the UK. There are lots of ways to get involved:

1) Make 1, 2 or 100 crochet or knitted hearts. Just do what you can.

2) They can be ANY COLOUR, ANY PATTERN, ANY SIZE. I’ve made a tutorial for absolute beginners…

3) Send them in by 17th Feb. Contact me for address. I can not give this out publicly.

4) If you can’t crochet or knit then please help us to label each heart at our 2 community events. PLEASE BRING A HOLE PUNCH AND SCISSORS WITH YOU! Please RSVP via email so we have an idea of numbers.
Saturday 25th Feb, Patchway Children’s Centre, Epney Close, Patchway, Bristol, BS34 5TF, Between 12.30- 4.30pm.

Sunday 26th Feb,St Marks Community Cafe, St Marks Road, Easton, BS5 6HX, Bristol, Between 2-6pm. You enter the cafe via the doors on Henrietta St and we will be in the upstairs room.

Many thanks to Doveton Press for donating the labels for us and to St Marks Community Cafe and Patchway Children’s Centre for donating their spaces.

Here’s our story:

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In 2015, Catherine, a mum of a Neo Natal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) baby and BLISS Bristol volunteer got in touch and challenged us to make crochet/ knitted hearts as Mother’s day gifts – one for every cot in the local NICU.

A heart received by a Mother spending Mother’s Day on the neonatal unit with their baby would be a lovely keepsake to let them know they are loved and thought of on that special day.

The response was immense – we ended up with 285 in total, one for every mama on Mothers day at each NICU across the whole of the South West.

After receiving one of the hearts, we got this message:” Thank you for my mother’s day heart! It brought a tear to my eye. My teeny tiny son is in St Michael’s NICU and is doing really well! I am just learning to crochet, and would love to be involved in this next year to repay the love!”

Then this Mother’s Day 2016 we have created an astounding 1810 hearts, they have been made by mamas all over Europe, with knitting and crochet groups and WI’s all pitching in to do their bit. Many of the mamas who received our hearts last year (whilst being in a NICU with their baby) participated this year.

The hearts were distributed to 77 NICU’s across England and the whole of Wales. This map shows you where they ended up.

Mamas who couldn’t knit or crochet got involved by helping to assemble the hearts ontoDSC09020 gift tags. Our youngest volunteer, 8 year old Matilda came to help assemble the hearts after her baby brother spent 6 weeks in a NICU.

Catherine said’ “As a Bliss volunteer, it is a real privilege to do little things like this for mums on their special day. These hearts are a keepsake they can treasure forever.”

We are thrilled and overwhelmed by the response that this campaign has brought and how a little thing like making a heart has brought so many women together. We hope the hearts will bring a smile to the hundreds and hundreds of mamas who receive them.

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Bliss logo(1)

St marks logo