Health Matters: The Baby Project

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. - Parents of newborns being treated in the NICU are getting some extra help thanks to "The Baby Project."

It helps parents by providing a place to stay so they can be closer to their little ones in the hospital.

"You know you're terrified because the babies were born so early and they're so little and I mean you're scared," says Christina Cleaves, New Mom.

For the first couple of weeks, Christina and Chad Dixon, of Arkadelphia, were driving back and forth to Baptist Health in Little Rock, to visit their twin girls in the NICU.

The couple's daughters were born premature.

"We were like how are we going to do this for like 12 more weeks?," says Christina.

The situation is stressful for these parents, who just wanted to be by their babies' sides at any given moment.

"It was like the hardest trip ever when we would have to go back home from being up here with them," she continues.

Thanks to "The Baby Project," Christina and Chad are now staying next door at "The Inn at Baptist Health."

"Just the peace of mind knowing that we can be here and across the street as much as we can," he says.

Missy Lewis with the Baptist Health Foundation showed us the hotel room, set up as a home away from home. She says The Baby Project is completely donor-funded.

"They can't afford the time off from work, they don't have a place to stay, they don't have food, it's very difficult, so we try to provide gas cards or sometimes food bucks or things that could help them," she adds.

"Really get to spend time with them, watch them grow, yes, in a real time of need," says Christina.

The need to be closer and hold their little ones tighter brightens spirits as they wait to go home.

The Baptist Health Foundation is a nonprofit that supports the hospital and its patients. It started with two rooms for parents at the plans to add a fourth room in January.

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