Update #8 ·

Read this heartwarming story from one of our supporters

After what had been a remarkably uneventful pregnancy, seemingly out of nowhere, I went into preterm labor. Two hours after walking down Santa Monica Boulevard with a strange feeling in my abdomen, I became the mother of a three-and-a-half pound preemie via emergency caesarian.

Neither my husband nor I had spent any time in a NICU, and we never imagined we would spend our first few months as parents making twice-daily trips to a hospital, negotiating past tubes and cords simply to hold our baby. Fortunately, Willie had a relatively smooth sail through his time in the NICU, and we owe a debt of gratitude to the staff who cared for him. We are amazed by our pure luck of the draw that he was born in Santa Monica, California, where access to top medical facilities and technology is available.

But we are also acutely aware that had Willie been born in a different country, his life could have taken a very different path. When Willie was in the NICU, we worried about his brain, his lungs, his heart, his weight gain and a myriad of other preemie challenges.

But we never worried that the electricity would go out, or that his incubator would break or that he would freeze or be burned, or that a heat lamp would shatter and spark a fire. 

Yet these are some of the challenges that parents of preemies face in the developing world, on top of concerns about their children’s long-term health. 

This Mother’s Day, our family is making a donation to Embrace, a nonprofit organization that donates “baby warmers” to countries where the use of incubators is not practical. Because they are low-tech, durable, portable, and easy to use, Embrace warmers are credited with saving over 50,000 babies from hypothermia in the last two years. 

By making this donation, my husband and I feel that we are beginning to repay the universe for the good fortune of being in the United States when our son was born. 

We are sharing our story to encourage other parents and families to support Embrace as well. Please visit embraceglobal.org to make a donation and give the gift of warmth and life to babies in need. 

— Liz Coyle

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