November 2019 Young Children Newsletter


Good morning fellow Kiwanians!

As many of you know I was born prematurely at 6 months. I have dealt with impaired vision issues my whole life due to impaired development from premature birth. As a result, I am passionate about the March of Dimes and their mission and programs. I hope this newsletter inspires you to work with MOD. To improve the lives of pregnant women and babies in your community.

Fact: 13% of SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome) has been attributed to smoking during pregnancy or after birth.
Fact: Every year more than 2.1 million babies are born prematurely or with birth defects throughout the world.
Fact: 100% of Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders(FASD) are 100% preventable.
Fact: Every year 2 million children die worldwide because they were not immunized.

  • Some children  born today die or suffer needlessly in spite of the medicines and technology available.Many will die because their mothers didn’t know how to take care of themselves during pregnancy; they have poor eating habits, smoke, drink alcohol or even take drugs. Other children will be handicapped permanently by their mothers’ lifestyles. 
  • Some babies won’t be seen by doctors for checkups and won’t be immunized. Others will suffer from being “shaken” they may suffer permanent disabilities or die. As Kiwanians there is much we can do.

We can educate the public!

Brochures available from the March of Dimes:


PRETERM LABOR identifies preterm labor, why it is important to know about it, risk factors, signs of preterm labor and what to do.

NEWBORN CARE deals with getting ready for the baby, baby’s first checkup, feeding your baby, after baby comes home, when baby is sick, and vaccination information.
Distribute to: doctor’s offices, clinics, grocery stores,  hospitals that provide parent education classes for pregnant women and mother support groups, health fairs.


•  Provide prenatal health-care at work

The March of Dimes has developed a series of nine seminars, titled “Babies and You,” designed for presentation during lunch hours or other periods of the workday. These seminars educate potential parents about lifestyle behaviors that can affect a pregnancy and encourage early and regular prenatal care. Many employers have begun to realize that their companies benefit from programs that improve the pregnancy outcome of workers.

A Kiwanis club could be the catalyst to bring the “Babies and You” seminars to a community. The club can work with small businesses in the community to organize a class of employees for the seminars. The “Babies and You” seminars are conducted by local March of Dimes offices. To find the nearest March of Dimes office, contact the Fulfillment Center of the March of Dimes at 800-367-6630 or


Set up a health screening or free clinic.

•  Contact the Department of Public Health in your area and ask if members can assist with their established programs.

 Develop a smoking awareness campaign for pregnant women
A public health expert has estimated that infant mortality would decrease by 10 percent if all pregnant women quit smoking. However, many pregnant smokers don’t know they are hurting their babies or the degree to which developing fetuses can be damaged.
There is much work to be done. Just think – how many lives can we save or improve by going out and educating the public.

Finally, November is when the March of Dimes focuses everyone’s attention on the impact premature birth has on babies and families. Throughout the month of November and on World Prematurity Day, November 17, Kiwanis International supports the March of Dimes by raising public awareness of the seriousness of premature birth. Members are encouraged to wear purple to their November meetings, joining in local March of Dimes awareness events, and hosting a guest speaker to share their prematurity story.

Ava Adams, District Chair
 Young Children Committee
Scarborough, Maine Kiwanis
New England Bermuda District