*The featured image for this post is Katie, Then (in the NICU isollete) and Now (fighting on!)
“I volunteer at Cedars-Siani Medical Center, and specifically in Good Beginnings, which is a part of the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU). I spent the first 6 weeks of my life there, and the way I give back is to volunteer my time to the NICU. Every year, I am a part of a team of volunteers that makes costumes for the babies in the NICU. It gives me a chance to give back and to thank those who saved my life. I can’t thank them in person, but I can help care for the babies in my own way. I also used to help organize the yearly reunions.
The biggest impact this has had is to remind me to care for people of all ages. I got my Master’s in Gerontology and learned how to better support older adults, and I work every day with college and graduate students, and this helps me remember those who are just starting out in their lives. Volunteering at Cedar-Siani reminds me of what is important and how some of the stresses at work are not as big a deal as those little babies fighting for their lives.
It also reminds me to be kind to all because we never know what people are dealing with.”
Katie in action with the NICU costume program organizer and team members:
A few of the articles on the program (several also include video):
- 2019: Cedars-Sinai’s Tiniest Babies Celebrate Halloween
- 2018: Handmade Costumes Give New Parents Chance to Celebrate Halloween in the NICU
- 2017: NICU Babies Raise Spirits on Halloween at Cedars
- 2017: 20 Years of Halloween Costumes in the NICU (featuring the images above)
- 2016: These Premature Babies Wearing Their First Halloween Outfits Will Melt Your Heart
Learn more about and connect with her by visiting Katie’s LinkedIn page.