Books to be given to struggling new parents at Northampton hospital to encourage reading to baby

Baby Book Club launch at Northampton General Hospital. Photo: NGH
Baby Book Club launch at Northampton General Hospital. Photo: NGH

Books will be provided to new parents struggling with the financial or practical demands of having a baby at Northampton General Hospital to encourage them to read to their child.

Northamptonshire-based online book store Igloo is working with the hospital and Baby Basics Northampton, which provides bespoke baskets to new mums and dads, to form the Baby Book Club.

What new parents in need at Northampton General Hospital with receive from the Baby Book Club. Photo: NGH

What new parents in need at Northampton General Hospital with receive from the Baby Book Club. Photo: NGH

Three baby-friendly books will be distributed to families and feature a little card explaining how reading to babies from birth helps them to develop and grow.

Head of volunteer services at the hospital, Emma Wimpress, said they are proud to launch the scheme.

"We know from our midwifery colleagues that reading to babies from birth helps babies to grow and develop their skills such as recognising shapes, numbers as well as promoting attachment and bonding," she said.

Baby Basics provides equipment and essentials to mothers and families including but not limited to teenage mums, people seeking asylum and women fleeing domestic abuse and trafficking.

A lot of referrals to Baby Basics come from midwives in the community and in the hospital and they work closely with midwives to help to make the donations as personal as possible.

Michelle Hardwick, ward sister on the neonatal Gosset ward said: "They ask us some basic information such as if the baby is a boy or a girl and then they put together a basket for us.

"When we bring it to the parents, they are usually so over the moon with it and absolutely love it.

"As well as them bringing things to us we work together to help to provide things for each other.

"For example sometimes we receive donations of clothes or knitted items but these can often be too big for some of our babies so we can then donate these to Baby Basics and help them to provide more baskets for other parents.”