If you’re a knitter or crocheter, you know it can be incredibly relaxing. But while it can save you from stress, did you know it could also help save a life?
The State Department of Health in Oklahoma is looking for volunteers with a passion for knitting and crocheting to make hats for babies as part of the “Period of PURPLE Crying” campaign.
The campaign aims to help parents understand this period of time in their baby’s life, when many are told their babies have “colic.”
Doctors use the term colic to refer to a baby who is healthy and well-fed but cries more than three hours a day more than three days a week.
Knitting Hats To Raise Awareness
This crying can happen from the age of two weeks to about three to four months old, and the PURPLE campaign notes that all babies experience this phase to some degree. The organization behind the campaign also wanted to give parents an easier-to-swallow name than colic.
The first few months of a newborn’s life are critical when it comes to Shaken Baby Syndrome (SBS), as it’s easy for parents to get frustrated with inconsolable crying.
The goal of the PURPLE campaign is to help reassure parents that as frustrating as the period can be, it will pass.
Here’s what the acronym PURPLE stands for (the website notes that it is not to indicate that babies turn purple from crying during this phase!):
Get That Yarn Ready
To raise awareness and help prevent SBS, the health department will be distributing 4,300 purple hats to 41 hospitals in Oklahoma.
Each baby born in November and December at participating hospitals will receive a hat along with Period of PURPLE Crying materials to educate and remind their caregivers of the importance of never shaking a baby.
Volunteers are asked to knit or crochet the caps with purple, baby-friendly yarn. They can have multiple colors and patterns, as long as they’re 50 percent purple and free of straps, strings or other potential choking hazards.
If you’d like to make a hat and mail it, you can do so at this address:
Oklahoma State Department of Health
ATTN: Maternal and Child Health
1000 NE 10th St
Oklahoma City, Ok 73117-1299
All hats must be received by Oct. 1, 2017, in order to make it into the batch of hats going to hospitals this year.
Love to crochet, but newborn hats not your strong suit? No worries—you can still use your skill to do good things in your community.
RELATED: Premature Babies In The NICU Are Getting Cuddles From Cute Crochet Octopuses
VolunteerMatch.org offers a list of places accepting donations of crocheted items.
You’ll find everything from dolls and children’s clothing to gifts for veterans and abused women, and even blankets for shelter animals.
More About The Period Of Purple Crying
Learn more about the period of purple crying from Developmental Pediatrician Dr. Ron Barr, in this video from the PURPLE campaign’s website:
[arve url=”https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5pAw8fJ_kUc” /]
One of the best takeaways from this campaign is promoting the idea that this period of unexpected, sometimes long-lasting crying is a normal developmental stage that many babies will go through.
For parents, just hearing that this is normal and that a phase will soon pass can be enough to help them feel more relaxed and confident.
So grab that yarn and get ready to do some good!