Looking to build on the ever-growing popularity of the program, London’s Children’s Hospital has added a second meaning to the “Click for Babies” campaign.
The annual public awareness campaign for the Period of PURPLE Crying shaken baby syndrome program is so named for the clicking of knitting needles.
It’s a call to all interested knitters to get their gear out and start clicking their needles together as they knit purple hats, mitts and booties that will be distributed to newborns along with a pamphlet and a DVD with strategies to minimize the chance of frustrated parents injuring a crying child.
Supported by Children’s Health Foundation, the program educates parents and caregivers regarding infant crying patterns and comforting strategies, as well as Shaken Baby Syndrome.
New for this year, the Children’s Hospital at London Health Sciences Centre (LHSC) is launching a social media campaign and asking parents who receive the purple items to upload photos of their babies wearing them to the LHSC Facebook page, giving knitters a new reason to "click."
“It’s the first time knitters will be able to see their hat on a baby’s head,” injury prevention specialist Lisa Wolfs said Thursday (Oct. 24). “I think the program sees success because it is for children. It’s a great way for the community to get involved in a feel-good program.”
About 3,000 purple items have been collected so far this year, with more coming in every day. Perinatal nurse consultant Kelly Barzsa-Jenkins said there was a box on her desk waiting to be unpacked as she spoke.
More than 10,000 hats have been donated since 2011.
The hats have come from as far as Malta (7,800 kilometres from London off the off the Sicilian coast) and the British Isles, and all over the United States.
“One knitter has 80 pen pals around the world,” Bazsa-Jenkins said. “She writes them and they all send us hats.”
Five hundred of the items will be distributed at LHSC in November. Another 1,000 will go to the 17 hospitals in southwestern Ontario that deliver babies.
Visit http://www.lhsc.on.ca/About_Us/LHSC/Publications/Features/PurpleCrying.htm to learn more.