April is the March of Dimes annual “March for Babies” month across the country, and thus so fitting to be our recipient for our monthly charitable contributions. We know first hand how critical the March of Dimes is in supporting premature infants, or those needing the services of a neonatal intensive care unit. Ashley’s daughter, sweet little Greta, was born prematurely at 33 weeks, 4 days gestation, and spent nearly 4 weeks in the NICU at Albany Med. During this time, I clearly remember the worry in Ashley’s voice each time we spoke during that time, but I also remember the comfort she felt as a direct result of the on-site March of Dimes representative, Amanda Hill. Some of Greta’s very first images with her mama were taken by Amanda in a very intimate and critical time in their lives--and they are a constant treasure and reminder of how fragile she was.
When I asked Amanda what was her single best moment was in giving back to her community through the March of Dimes, she couldn’t choose just one. However, on a daily basis, it is exactly what she did for Ashley that touches her so much. “I take the pictures of mothers and fathers the first time they hold their babies, often days after they are born, because these babies are too medically fragile to be held right away,” said Amanda. "These are powerful moments for me, because I am myself a mother of a NICU graduate, and honored to support our families."
Most recently, Amanda, was able to be at the first birthday party of one of her former patients who is now happy and healthy and whose family she knew well while in the NICU. "I’m so very proud of all of the work they’ve done to get to where they are, and so very proud to work for an organization that supported the medical research and technology that helped them get there."
Regarding our donation, Amanda simply said "We know first-hand in our program how important photography is to our families, and we deeply appreciate your support!"
The mission of the March of Dimes is to help mothers have full-term pregnancies and research the problems that threaten the health of babies. We urge you to join us in supporting their mission either monetarily or by joining the local chapter’s “March for Babies" on Sunday, April 29.
Note: ABP’s monthly charitable contributions are based on the proceeds from prints, products and sessions. Any session booked with a deposit received will be applicable to that month’s charitable organization, though the session may be held in the proceeding month.