Eli's Promise to Preemies
Katie awoke one morning with heavy bleeding she was only 23 weeks into her pregnancy. Immediately Katie
was transported by ambulance to the University of Tennessee Medical Center in Knoxville, TN. If Eli was born at 23 weeks he only had a 5% chance of survival. Things looked very grim for Eli but the doctors were able to stop the progression of Katie's labor for three more weeks. Eli spent the next 84 days in the neonatal intensive care unit. Due to the March of Dimes support in research, Eli was able to have life saving treatment that he so desperately needed to survive. Eli is now a beautiful 17 month old little boy who is healthy and happy with an infectious smile. Every year over a half million babies are born too soon. Prematurity is the leading cause of newborn death.
In honor of Eli, Katie's family developed a team that raised over $10,000 for the March of Dimes and the fight against prematurity. Katie said "We feel God has blessed us in this journey for a reason, Not every baby born prematurely has such a good outcome." The Gilbert family hopes that one day no one will ever have to experience this difficult journey, where a baby will have to fight for his/her life. " Eli story could have easily been much different."
On February 11, 2014 a special grant of $20,000 was presented by the March of Dimes and the Gilbert family on behalf of Eli, to the Pregnancy Support Center of Johnson County. The name of the grant is called "Eli's Promise to Preemies- Healthy Beginnings." The PSCJC's "Healthy Beginnings" program is a prenatal and infant care educational program designed to reduce risk factors that contribute to low birth weight, preterm birth and infant mortality. On behalf of the Pregnancy Support Center of Johnson County and it's Board of Directors we are honored to have received such a special grant and would like to thank the Gilbert family, their team, the "Eli's Miracle Makers" and the March of Dimes. Through your support of the "Healthy Beginnings" program we believe that together we can improve the chances of women having a healthy pregnancy and a healthy baby. Your generous gift is truly making a difference in the lives of many families.