A terrified mother found herself in a distressing situation when she was forced to give birth prematurely while stranded hundreds of miles away from home in Aberdeen. Amy Jenkins, who was 35 weeks pregnant at the time, had traveled to Moray in July to celebrate her father’s retirement. However, she started experiencing back pains and was taken to Dr Gray’s Hospital in Elgin, where she was diagnosed with preeclampsia. As her symptoms worsened, she was transferred to Aberdeen Maternity Hospital. On August 23, Amy gave birth to her son, Brody, who weighed only 4 lb 6 1/2 oz and required special care in the hospital’s neonatal unit.
Unfortunately, Amy and her family, including her husband Alex and their four-year-old son Jude, were stranded in Aberdeen, facing a seven-hour car journey back home without a vehicle or accommodation. However, thanks to the timely intervention of The Archie Foundation, their predicament was alleviated. The charitable foundation offered them a comfortable place to stay, providing much-needed support during an incredibly stressful time.
Gillian Thom, the support manager for the foundation, became the Jenkins’ family’s first point of contact, offering them accommodation at the Archie Family Centre in Aberdeen. Gillian’s warm and welcoming nature provided the family with a sense of comfort during their stay. Amy expressed her gratitude, stating, Financial strains are upsetting at the best of times, let alone when you’re miles from home with a newborn baby, so it was a huge weight off our shoulders to know we were supported.
Recognizing the importance of their work, The Archie Foundation provided the Jenkins family with a financial grant to cover their expenses while they stayed in Aberdeen. Additionally, they ensured that the family had a suitable car seat for Brody’s journey home when he was discharged nearly two weeks later. Despite the challenging circumstances surrounding his birth, Brody has thrived and is now settled at home with his loving family.
The Archie Foundation, based at the Royal Aberdeen Children’s Hospital, has been providing assistance to children and families across the north of Scotland for over two decades. Their services include financial support, overnight accommodation, funding for specialist equipment, and more. As the world marks World Prematurity Day on November 17, The Archie Foundation celebrates the successful outcome for baby Brody and his family.
In a statement, Paula Cormack, the chief executive of The Archie Foundation, emphasized their commitment to supporting families during challenging hospital stays. She highlighted the comprehensive range of services they offer to neonatal families, including funding specialized equipment, providing hot drinks and snacks, and offering staff training. The foundation aims to make the difficult experience of having a child in the hospital a little bit easier for families.
The Archie Foundation will be hosting a celebration on November 19 at the McGillivary Room in Aberdeen Maternity Hospital. The event welcomes neonatal staff and past and present families to come together and share their experiences. The foundation’s dedication to supporting families in need is evident, and baby Brody’s successful journey home is a testament to their valuable work.
As World Prematurity Day raises awareness about prematurity worldwide, it is heartening to see organizations like The Archie Foundation making a positive impact on the lives of families in need. Baby Brody’s story serves as a reminder of the resilience and strength of premature babies and their families, and the crucial role that charitable foundations play in providing support and comfort during challenging times.