On Saturday, May 5 our community will be walking in March for Babies to give hope to the families of babies born too soon or sick -- more than 7,200 each year in Minnesota alone.
The money we raise will support March of Dimes research and programs that help moms have healthy, full-term pregnancies right here in Southwestern Minnesota.
It funds research to find answers to the serious problems that threaten our babies, like premature birth. Affecting more than half a million babies in our country each year, premature birth is the #1 cause of newborn death and the rate of premature birth continues to rise.
Registration for March for Babies at Marshall Middle School is at 9:00 am. The walk starts at 10:00 am. See you there!
Chad and Heidi Swanson walk in March for Babies in honor of their daughter Kalli. After months of trying to get pregnant, the Marshall couple was excited to find out they were pregnant with twins. However, an ultrasound early on revealed they had lost one of the babies.
24 weeks into her pregnancy, Heidi became concerned with the health of her surviving baby girl. Doctors discovered blood restriction to the placenta was causing her baby to have a low heart rate. After time on bed rest, Kalli Marie Swanson was born 13 weeks early on Mother’s Day in May of 2010. Kalli weighed one pound, twelve ounces. It was five days before they could hold their little girl. “It took several nurses to move her from her isolette because she was intubated and had a chest tube. It was a mix of emotions for us,” shared Heidi. “We were so excited to finally hold our daughter, but were scared too.”
Baby Kalli faced a long road ahead. Her lungs were underdeveloped and she needed specialized care. The March of Dimes was there for Kalli and her family. March of Dimes-funded researchers developed the life-saving treatment for her lungs and March of Dimes led the way to put newborn intensive care units (NICUs) within reach of every baby. Kalli stayed in the NICU for her first 104 days of life.
The March of Dimes also supported Chad and Heidi through the NICU Family Support program at Avera McKinnon Hospital in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. “We were given books and information to help us understand the NICU and what to expect while our baby was there,” said Heidi.
Today, Kalli is smart, feisty, funny and very active. “We are so grateful that our baby girl is here, is healthy, and will be turning 2 soon,” said Heidi. “We’re happy to share our story and hope we can help the March of Dimes to help other families like us.”