In Australia, 1 in 12 babies are born prematurely, with many of these babies requiring Neonatal Intensive Care.
Running for Premature Babies is a charity working to better the chance of survival for premature babies through fundraising for life-saving equipment and research.
On 24 July, Running for Premature Babies took part in Run Melbourne to raise funds for Monash Newborn and to give premature babies a better chance of survival.
The charity had 119 runners wear purple to support premature babies and raised an incredible total of $38,000 which will go towards purchasing a new humidicrib for Monash Newborn.
Joining the team at Run Melbourne was Sophie Smith, the Melbourne Coordinator of Running for Premature Babies.
Sophie heard about the charity while her twin girls, Grace and Faye, were being cared for in Monash Newborn’s NICU after being born prematurely at 24 weeks.
The girls had a difficult start to life but overcame their challenges, with both girls going home after 140 days in hospital. Today, Grace and Faye are happy and thriving and recently celebrated their first birthday.
Sophie was so inspired by the Running for Premature Babies community that she and her partner ran the Melbourne Marathon last year, raising over $10,000 for Running for Premature babies.
Sophie’s passion continued, and this year she took on an official volunteer role, becoming the first ever Melbourne Coordinator and organising the first Running for Premature Babies team in a Victorian running event.
“Raising awareness is so important because, without the NICU medical teams and life-saving equipment and surgeries, we know that we would be in a very different position and that our girls would not be here today,” Sophie said.
Monash Health is so grateful and thankful for the efforts of Running for Premature Babies and everyone who joined the run to support premature babies and their families, and raised important funds for Monash Newborn.
Want to join the team?
Running for Premature Babies has teams participating in the Melbourne Kids Fun Run on Sunday, 21 August and Nike Melbourne Marathon on Sunday, 2 October.
For more information about these events and to join a team, visit: www.runningforprematurebabies.com/events