Keata Murray, a 36 year old mum from Bletchingley, made a special visit to East Surrey Hospital neonatal unit with members of her local church to thank staff for the care of her daughter Olive, and to bring Christmas stockings for all the babies on the ward.
Keata said: “Olive arrived prematurely at 27 weeks -and the 15 weeks Olive then needed to spend in hospital were undoubtedly the hardest weeks of our lives.
“The neonatal unit team are real-life angels. I have a photo of everyone who looked after Olive during her stay in the unit. One day when she is older I will show her their photos and tell them that they were all her Mummy when I couldn’t be. I really consider them to be a part of Olive’s family.”
When Olive was discharged from hospital Keata really wanted to help other parents who were in the same situation. The congregation at Christ Central church in Redhill that Keata and her family attend were keen to help and donated 30 handmade Christmas stockings for the babies who will spend their first Christmas in the unit. They also set up a mini version of their church’s coffee shop, West Central, in the unit’s kitchen for parents to enjoy a comforting hot drink during the long days and nights they spend with their baby in the unit.
Lindsey Warner, neonatal outreach nurse said: “We are grateful to Keata and the church members for all the support they have given the ward. The Christmas stockings are such a lovely thought and I know the parents will be delighted.”
Olive is now 10 months old and still receives outpatient support from the hospital. Keata said: “Olive is very strong and continues to fight with the same will and determination as she did from the very first second of her early start to life.”