With your support there is hope!
What a joy it is for us to share our creations with others! We hope to be able to continue this mission for many years to come. Please remember that they do not dress the preemie babies in sweaters in the NICU. The sweaters are for going home.
As you know, the needs are ongoing and never ending. In fact, the needs increase from year to year with the alarming number of premature and low birth weight infants born. The economic downturn has affected the ability of families to provide for their new arrivals. Nurses report more cases of families in need—for whom a few donated layette items really bring cheer and a morale boost.
I'm hoping that by sharing my love for making baby items and giving them to those in need I will inspire you to do the same.
I am wondering if you know of any companies that will be prepared to offer The Ruth Mailbag Group members discount prices when purchasing yarn either online or in store as we need to begin making more winter items! Any advice is appreciated.
Project of the month
Blankets & clothing for Ikhaya Lethu Orphanage & Care Centre. Closing date for this project – 7 April 2012
St Patrick’s Day items for preemie and newborn babies. Closing date for this project – Friday, 9 March 2012
Lent begins Wednesday, 22 February 2012, and ends Thursday, 5 April 2012, we will have a Lenten Challenge to knit, crochet, sew or quilt for charity - one item per day (40 days) e.g. 40 squares for blankets, a bootie a day = 20 pairs, a cap a day, etc. It starts on February 22 and ends April 5. Purple, the colour of royalty and repentance is the traditional colour for the season of Lent; black, the sombre colour of mourning and sorrow for sin; use also scarlet, an intense variant of purple and red that symbolizes the life-giving blood of Christ. Please post and let us know what you are making and how you are progressing. Photos are welcome.
Every first Saturday of the month and please join us in the message forums and groups listed below.
We held the first meeting of the New Year on the 4th February, 2012. It was wonderful to have so many ladies present. Despite having been in recess during the December and January our group continued to work and assist the community as usual. It was a happy and productive meeting. All enjoyed the “show and tell” and Di was able to show us the new yarn from Elle for scarves that produce a very interesting ruffle scarf.
NEW HOSPITAL LISTING
Name of hospital: Stanger Hospital
Address for donations: PRIVATE BAG X 10609, STANGER 4450, South Africa; Name and telephone number of staff liaison person who will receive donations for distribution: Miss Silindile Mzila - Public Relations Officer - 076 717 2006; Tel: 032 437 6240; Fax: 032 552 2767; Cell: 076 717 2006; E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org; Needs: Preemie booties & hats in all colours, jackets if possible and receivers for KMC; General: Need 40 of each item and some new born full term baby items, please.
Name of hospital: Itshelejuba Hospital
Address for donation: Itshelejuba Hospital, P/Bag X0047, Pongola 3170, South Africa (N2 north, about 30 km past Pongola); Name and telephone number of staff liaison person who will receive donations for distribution: Mthandeni Mzelemu (Public Relations Officer); Tel.034 413 2542/3/4 or 0762217743; Cell 082 357 5774 (in the event of landline service failure; Fax +27 (0) 34 413 2545; Email Mthandeni.Mzelemu@kznhealth.gov.za; Needs: normally monthly we have about 30 premature babies being born in this institution ; General: We would like to express our deepest gratitude and appreciation to your organisation for the great work that you are doing for the community.
When you send items to hospitals, please send us photos of your beautiful little items and in turn, if the hospitals can send us pictures of the gifting done at their hospitals we can share them on our facebook page for all to enjoy. Thank you.
Kindly note that all Ruth Mailbag items are given free to infants, children and their parents!!!
Please mark all packages “FOR CHARITY – NO RETAIL VALUE”. I recommend that you write “or other staff member” after the name on the mailing.
Gift tags: Raising awareness of our organization helps us to not only celebrate more volunteers but also let others know we can help them. Please send me an email (email@example.com) to request gift tags to use when donating. Thank you for helping me to spread the word about the needs of young hospital patients and others in need.
According to UNICEF 22% of all low-birth weight infants born in developing countries are born in Africa. They state that the number of low-birth weight babies is more than double the number born in developed regions, South Africa rating at a level of 14.6%. This percentage may increase to as much as 25% in the public sector. The mortality rate of premature babies is three times higher than in newborns.
Prematurity in South Africa is a growing phenomenon. An average of 14% of all babies in South Africa are born premature and therefore it is important that all healthcare professionals are knowledgeable regarding their potential challenges, development that may be at risk and most importantly how to manage these babies and their parents.
Although our hospitals have highly-trained doctors, the race to save the tiniest life is given a boost by the involvement of loving parents. The fight for life that your little gladiator shows is one of the most remarkable birth experiences you could have. And because your love and care can make such a difference to your baby’s development, she needs you more than ever.
Thank you in advance for donations.
Hospitals, PLEASE be sure to send address changes & corrections.
We can't thank you enough for your recent donation. People take clothes for granted-- until you don't have any! Please know how much you've helped the moms, babies, and children. Once again, thank you for your generosity:
Doreen, family and friends; Little Lumps; Deborah Jackson, UK; Barbara de Wet and friends; Gail R.; Ellie Weeber; Sylvia de Lange; Gerty; Denise; Di Watts; Methodist WA; Retha Fountain; Joan de Pindray; Elna and friends; Heather, Beacon Fellowship; Rosemary Powell; Phyllis B., Sinoville; Judy Maccarone; Pam (Deb’s mom); Durban Overalls, Steve and Pam; Mariaan and Ladysmith Gazette.
Thank you, for your support!
Letters I enjoy receiving...
On Thu, Feb 16, 2012 at 9:19 AM, Karen Clark <firstname.lastname@example.org>wrote:
Just to let you know we received a box of very sweet baby clothes... We have distributed the clothes into baby bags; each new mum will take some home with her after she gives birth at the birth house.
Thank you again.
Karen (Busfare Babies)
The Ruth Mailbag Group participants have made a difference in the world by providing warmth and comfort to those who are experiencing traumatic life experiences. Unfortunately, we don’t have a crystal ball to view the smiles we bring to the faces of families, children, hospital staff members, senior citizens, cancer patients, etc…
The Ruth Mailbag Group participants use each day to help others in need. I am delighted to hear from hospital staff members who report how much patients and families appreciate your caring. I am also delighted to hear from participants who feel that they are productive, useful, and engaged in the life of their community.
Gifted to the moms and babies at the Ladysmith Provincial hospital - 63 sets for preemies, 67 sets for newborn babies and one little white set for an “angel” baby (thank you, Joan). Thank you so much for the work you do for our nation’s hospitals. The items are truly personal and touching, and I know the many families that are lucky to leave with one of these items will be forever grateful.
A nice big donation of bandanas, beanies and hats was given to Hospice; a box of vests was sent to Busfare Babies, Port Shepstone Hospital and Stanger Hospital.
Sincere thanks to everyone who sent a donation.
As discussed at the meeting in February...
Please do not make the blankets smaller than 30 inches square if possible... the staff has suggested that we do not make preemie sized blankets as the babies outgrow them so quickly 30 inches = 76.2 centimetres (this is the recommended size).
Jerseys/jackets should fit 4 pounds (1.8 kilograms) and up as most hospitals like them for going home. The tiny jerseys are NOT used in the unit; they want the sweaters to put on the babies when leaving. Make your items to fit 4 lbs and up. Jerseys any smaller will not be used!!! The size Retha makes is perfect for the very small size; they will outgrow quickly, but will look delightful going home. I recently had a new mom of a Kangaroo care baby who dressed her baby in your little sets during her off the chest moments and the little one looked delightful. With our regular visits they collect 3 or more outfits before they leave for home.
Hat sizes – Preemie - 4- 5 lbs = 2 kg - Head Circumference 11 1/2" - 12 1/2" 28-33 cm hat circ =9" - 11.5" 23-28 cm Hat height = 4 to
4.5" 10-11cm (most needed size for preemies); Newborns - Head Circumference 13" - 14 " 33-36cm; hat circ = 11.5" -13" Hat height = 5.5 to 6" 13-15 cm
Foot Size - 3-5 lbs = 2 kg - Foot Length 2 1/2" - 3" 5-7cm (most needed size for preemies); 7-9 lbs = 3.175 kilograms to 4.082 kilograms - Foot Length 3 1/4" - 3 3/4" 9-10 cm (most needed size for newborns)
Please finish your items before sending. I have been receiving items with NO buttons, NO ties etc. I may not have the same yarn you used to make the item so therefore I can't finish it. It just takes a minute to go through your items to make sure they are done. After all, you work so hard to make the beautiful items why not finish them. :-)
When making clothing items for the babies, please, try and make the items out of 3 or 4 ply, (use any soft acrylic yarn).
Do not use large hooks/needles, please, to make your precious items as it makes them too loose and holey and as discussed at the last meeting it can be very dangerous for the baby. Please try to keep the items we are making in the PREEMIE or NEWBORN range and please make sure whatever buttons you use will stay hooked and are flat, also if you are in doubt about the sizing you are making please contact me. Making items TOO LARGE or TOO SMALL is not going to work.
Sadly we have to say goodbye to Lorna and her Mom, Thank you for all the beautiful blankets crocheted during your stay with us, we will miss you. God’s richest blessings to you both. Keep well. Do good work. And, keep in touch,
Founder – The Ruth Mailbag Group
Fax: 086 516 4618
Delivery: The Ruth Mailbag Group, “For charity – NO retail value”, C/o Foto First, 180 Murchison Street, Ladysmith 3370, South Africa
Related links: Fax 086 516 4618http://groups.yahoo.com/group/TheRuthMailbagGroup/