Dear Friends and Family,
Last year I ran the Boston Marathon for the first time and with your help I achieved an amazing fundraising goal for Breast Cancer treatment. This year, I again need your support to raise funds for the care of premature babies and families in The Brigham and Women’s NeoIntensive Care Unit (NICU). My running program is well underway, and now it is time to focus on the fundraising goal.
The impetus to write now comes from the power of our newest family member, my cousin’s son, Jude Thomas Striepe, who came into this world prematurely at 3lbs 15 oz at 32 weeks. Many of you might remember that my son Evan was born at 28 weeks, 2 lbs, 8 oz. and spent the first 3 months of his life in the BWH NICU. Evan is now 8 years old, energetic, strong, and no longer fits in the palm of our hands.
We will be forever grateful for the BWH NICU staff and center that supported us every step of the way through a difficult journey. A journey you are thrust into and is full of extremes, including joy, sorrow, worry, hope and a precious babe developing in front of your eyes. For us the most powerful experience was being there, being present and staying connected with preemie Evan – through touch and holding, while taking in the support of the medical team and interventions needed.
The BWH NICU is building a new center that will provide advancements for premature babies, including quiet spaces with natural lighting. We know that premie babies do better in a calmer, in utero like environment. BWH NICU is leading the way in showing how important physical environment is; how research in all areas is increasing more good outcomes for babies and families, from extremes that include the physical space where a family spends time bonding with the newest (and smallest) family member down to the kind of bandage strips they use on the tender skin of the newborn.
April 16, 2012 I will be running 26.2 miles to pass that on. I know that if you were in Boston with me on this day you would stand at the side of the road and salute me for my physical effort, please also stand with me for my preferred cause this year; premature babes and their families! I thank you in advance, from the bottom of my heart, for your support, any amount will be considered generous and I put my palms together to salute you for your help.
Please make an online donation by visiting my website: http://www.crowdrise.com/teambrigham/fundraiser/megstriepe. If you prefer, send your tax-deductible donation to my home address: 12 Sylvan Way, Sudbury, MA 01776: Checks should be made payable to: Team Brigham/NICU
Thank you again and all the best for a happy and healthy 2012.