FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. — As of June 23, the Rath Brothers organization officially became a nonprofit. owner of the operation, Kala Rath says her passion to give started last Christmas.
“Two days before Christmas my husband and I drove up to Mercy in Rogers and Willow creek there in Johnson and we delivered those Christmas stockings to the parents in the NICU,” Rath recalls.
Rath has experienced firsthand how traumatic pregnancy and delivery can be. she is a mother of two sets of twins with the first set being four-year-old girls and the second set being two-year-old boys.
“You don’t realize how many other people have gone through that same experience or something similar to it. when you’ve been in those shoes…you want to help and help the new moms that are right there with us,” said Rath.
Throughout her pregnancy she faced multiple complications at 32 weeks she had an abruption and an emergency c-section which lead to her twin boys spending six weeks in the NICU.
“The delivery room was quiet, there were no cries…I kept asking if there were okay because I could tell they were out…you didn’t hear anything it was the most terrifying moment of my life. It should be one of the happiest moments of your life… when your children are born, but it wasn’t,” Rath recalls.
The organization not only donates to parents in the NICU but it also provides supplies for the babies. babies in the NICU use crochet octopus, scent squares, and bonding hearts.
“The babies will grab a hold of these octipi, it gives them something to hang onto as opposed to hanging on to their tubes and lines that are feeding tubes or something and pulling them out,” said Rath
Certain hospitals request different supplies, but she’s asking the community to donate and help crochet the octopus and scent squares.
“The idea is that the mothers would wear it, you know put it in their shirts or whatever and the scent is absorbed into these squares and then take them to the baby while they’re in the NICU… and place them with them so they can smell their mother,” Rath explains.
With everything she went through, the purpose of the organization is to take the load off the parents by providing care packages upon admission into the NICU. eventually, the goal is to pay off hospital bills for parents.
“But everything I can devote….I want to pour that into this project and help the parents with easing that transition,” said Rath.
This December her twin boys will be three years old and she’s grateful that they’re healthy and living normal lives.
Mercy hospital is requesting octopus, crib sheets, refillable water bottles, and fabric bonding hearts.
Washington regional hospital needs scent squares, fitted crib sheets and books for older siblings to read to keep the occupied while visiting siblings in NICU. You can find the organization on their website at rathbros.org
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