Saturday, June 29, 2013

New Arrivals

Two of our most frequently asked questions are: "Where do the babies come from?" and, "What is the process for bringing a new baby into your home?'  On Wednesday, seven-month-old Santiago and nine-month-old Amelia joined our GBH family. We would like to use their arrival to answer those questions.

When we have funding and trained staff in place (1:2 baby to adult ratio and $500 committed monthly financial support per baby), we let our Mexican Director, Martin Castro, know that we are ready for more babies. Martin then works with the DIF (Mexican Social Services) to coordinate which babies will come and when. All our babies come through the DIF.

The DIF will set up a time to bring the babies to us, or Martin will pick them up from the central shelter where they are currently being housed. 

When they arrive we offer a bottle so that their tummies are full and we can start them on a feed-wake-sleep schedule. This all happens very slowly, allowing time to take in their new environment, new sounds, and new friends.

New babies are given their own white board where we will keep notes of their daily lives for the rest of their stay at GBH. 

There can be up to forty babies at one time in the DIF shelter. For them to keep accurate records and identify them correctly, they wear wrist bands at all times. We cut the bands off and save them in their file.

GBH Director, Juan Strutton, reads through the file on each baby. If any changes in care are required, he notifies the staff, otherwise the file remains private.
Babies are weighed and measured. A growth chart is started.

Babies are carefully and tenderly bathed. Crazy, fun, splashing baths are a ways off yet:)

We try to get medical attention within the first 48 hours of the babies' arrival. KT is a bilingual pediatric nurse practitioner, who is amazing. She explains anything we may medically be unsure of and helps us get the babies on the road to health and wellness.

On this particular visit we had a brief lecture on respiratory issues, an explanation on all the meds that were prescribed before their arrival, a hands on lesson in how to work our nebulizer, as well as a written "if-then" plan for step-by-step asthma treatment. Phew!

Amelia and Santiago arrived Wednesday. They are already showing signs of improvement in their health. As they start to feel better, their personalities begin to emerge. Santiago is generally a happy little guy. Amelia is quiet and very sweet. Both share an undeniable resemblance to the image of their Maker. Thank you for keeping these two new little ones in your prayers.
Posted by Juan Strutton at 4:28 PM

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