AN amazing group of mums are doing their bit to make a trip to Colchester Hospital’s neonatal unit more comfortable for parents.

Thanks to fundraising efforts and sponsorship, support group Colchester Miracle Babies has provided welcome bags to be distributed to each couple when they arrive at the unit.

These include the likes of toiletries, tea, snacks, baby books and information on how to find support after leaving hospital.

Stacie Courtney saw the idea’s impact first hand after she gave birth to her son Logan at Coventry Hospital.

Logan was born at 26 weeks, weighing just two lbs two ounces and had to be transferred to a category three neonatal unit as his life was at serious risk.

Stacie said: “When I was in Coventry I was given a bag and it is so lovely to be given items in case you haven’t had time to bring them with you.

“We have 200 already made up and we are working towards having 400 so every mum gets one when they come in.

“Hopefully the mums can report back to us if there is something they would like to see added to the packs going forward.

“We are hoping the welcome bags will help raise our profile. Inside there is a note explaining who we are and what we do.”

Clacton and Frinton Gazette: Members of Colchester Miracle Babies with the welcome bagsMembers of Colchester Miracle Babies with the welcome bags

Faye Storey’s daughter, Mollie, was born at 29-weeks-old weighing just 856 grammes, or one lb 14 oz.

But thanks to the support and care she received at the neonatal unit, 19 months later she is fighting fit and doing everything a toddler should be.

Faye said: “She is walking and shouting and has no problems whatsoever.

“It would have made a huge difference to me if I had been given one of these welcome bags.

“Before I came here I was naïve to the fact neonatal units existed and I had no idea every hospital has one.

“I thought two babies a month would come here but there can be 17 here at a time and they see between 350 to 400 births a year.

“When I left here I desperately wanted to be able to help and give something back to the hospital.

“Your biggest thought when you take your baby home is you owe this unit more than you could ever explain.”

The welcome bags have been paid for through the group’s fundraising efforts, which have included a Walk for a Miracle sponsored walk, a Christmas fair and quizzes.

Supporters have also donated toiletries and the like and some kind-hearted businesses have also helped out with sponsorship including iGO4, which printed the branded bags with the group’s logo.

The first bag was given out on Friday to new mum Natalie Davey, who is from Colchester.

She was staying in the unit with tiny twins Leo and Logan, who were born at 30 weeks and two days.

Karen Moss, senior sister at the neonatal unit, said she was extremely grateful for the group’s support.

She said: “It is a fantastic achievement and it will be so appreciated by the parents who receive them.

“All the mums who come in usually come in as an emergency so the little bits in these bags will help them a lot.

“We are grateful for the continued support of the Miracle Babies Group as they are fantastic.”

Run by Fiona Knight and Madeleine Steele, Colchester Miracle Babies has refurbished the family room at the unit, donated MP3 players for mums and helped pay so staff could attend a conference held by charity Bliss.

The eventual aim for the group is to assist however it can the unit in becoming a category three centre, which means parents will be able to stay closer to home for treatment.

Faye said: “They do not do surgery here at the moment so if your baby needs surgery you have to be transferred to Luton, Norwich, Cambridge or London.

“We are always looking for more support, either from businesses or in donations.”

If you want to help or for more information visit