Frustration with a crying infant is the number one trigger for the shaking and abuse of infants. In an effort to help spread awareness about normal infant crying and the dangers of shaking an infant, Blank Children's Hospital, in partnership with the National Center on Shaken Baby Syndrome, is launching a statewide public education campaign to make thousands of purple colored baby caps.
The grassroots campaign, called Click for Babies: Period of PURPLE Crying Caps, invites knitters and crocheters across Iowa to make purple colored baby caps which will be delivered to new babies and their families in November with the Period of PURPLE Crying, an evidence-based program that educates parents about normal infant crying, ways to cope with crying, and the dangers of reacting in frustration by shaking or abusing an infant.
"The handmade purple caps are meant to serve as a reminder for parents about the Period of PURPLE Crying and the dangers of shaking," says Ryan Steinbeigle, Campaign Director. "Last year, over 60,000 purple colored caps were donated and distributed to thousands of families across North America in an effort to prevent infant abuse."
In 2011, hospitals in Iowa collected and distributed more than 6,800 purple caps. Click for Babies, now in its second year, is a collaborative effort between the National Center on Shaken Baby Syndrome and other states. Iowa joins Oregon, Washington, Utah, Kansas, Oklahoma, North Carolina, West Virginia, and Maine in the 2012 campaign.
"We are so thrilled to be involved again in the Click for Babies campaign," says Amber Russell, Community Child Advocate at Blank Children's Hospital. "Last year's campaign was so successful, and it was such a wonderful experience to provide all of the handmade purple hats from knitters and crocheters across Iowa to parents and babies with the PURPLE program."
Caps are being collected at Blank Children's Hospital in the administration office, just off the lobby. They will then be given to babies born during the month of November. Blank Children's Hospital will also host a "knit-in" on Saturday, August 25 from 9:00 to noon where knitters and crocheters are invited to come to the lobby at the hospital and join fellow crafters in working on their caps.
More information about the Click for Babies campaign, including patterns for caps and guidelines and details about the national campaign are available at www.clickforbabies.org.