It’s been months in the making, and now, a room dedicated to helping babies and mothers in need – is open at Niagara Falls Memorial Hospital.

“My dad was born here, my sisters and brother and I were all born here. We have a connection to this community and this hospital,” Mary Friona-Celani, President of Totally Buffalo Cares, said today. “We know the need is great and we are going to do whatever we can to help these babies get the best possible start to life.”

The room is filled with blankets, clothing, car seats, play pens, and other items needed by new moms. Each baby will go home with a bag of love and some other items on an as-needed basis.

The need is great. The alarming statistics emerging from Niagara Falls, paint a distressing picture of the challenges faced by newborns and their families in this area. Infant mortality rates in these areas are 3 to 4 times higher than the New York State average, a stark indicator of the dire circumstances under which these babies are born. Large percentages of babies born at NFMMC require CPS intervention or are placed in foster care.

Niagara County’s ONLY remaining labor and delivery hospital – Niagara Falls Memorial Medical Center – is in urgent need of your help to raise awareness and funding for desperate moms and babies. These statistics are appalling yet true:

• Infant death rates are 3 to 4 times higher than the State average in 2 Niagara Falls’ zip codes
• The teen birth rate is 6 time higher than the New York State average in zip code 14303 and 4 times higher in zip codes 14301 and 14305
• The teen pregnancy rate is 3 to 5 times more than the state rate in 3 Niagara Falls zip codes
• Premature birth rates are higher than the NYS average in all four Niagara Falls zip codes
• The low birth rate percentage is higher than the State average in all 4 Niagara Falls zip codes
• The percentage of women with late or no prenatal care is higher than the State average in all 4 Niagara Falls zip codes
• 23.8% of the population of Niagara Falls live in poverty, a number that is higher than the national average of 12.6%

This is more than a problem. This is a crisis. With roughly 300 births expected this year, the need at Niagara Falls Memorial Medical Center is great and the statistics are dire. Nearly a third of the hospital’s deliveries are high-risk newborn deliveries.

Our objective is to raise money to support NFMMC’s women’s service programs, provide major upgrades to the NFMMC Woman’s Pavilion, support labor and delivery programs like P3 and Doulas for high-risk women living in poverty and to support pre and post-partum care.

Donations to support disadvantaged babies born at Niagara Falls Memorial can provide critical resources and essential infant care items. These contributions can be life-changing, offering these infants a fighting chance at a healthier start in life, which is a fundamental right of every child, regardless of their birthplace.

We are making bags of love for moms and babies which include things like blankets, onesies, bibs, nail clippers and thermometers and other essential items. We can’t do this without your help!

You can order some items from our Amazon Wish List here OR sponsor a baby here.