Westport Brownies' efforts help infants in developing countries
What members of Westport Brownie Troop 50015 did at Save The Children headquarters Tuesday afternoon didn't take a whole lot of effort, but mothers in Mali, Guatemala and Indonesia will be more than grateful for the two hours they spent making infant caps.
The Brownies pitched in for Save The Children's "Caps for Good" campaign. Save the Children officials say in many developing countries, something as simple as a knit or crocheted cap can help a baby keep warm, which is key to helping newborns survive.
Brownie Troop Leader Diane Shaw said the cap-making "gives them some perspective that something they can do can make an impact on someone in another part of the world."
The Westport-based troop is comprised of third-graders from Coleytown Elementary School.
"They're helping newborns keep warm at a critical time in their life," said Troop Leader Charmain Valante.
Tricia Puskar, Save The Children's associate diretcor of outreach, explained to the Brownies that many hospitals in developing countries lack incubators to keep premature babies warm. The last time Save The Children sought caps for infants, from September, 2008 to January, 2009, more than 100,000 were collected across the country and beyond. Puskar expects to exceed that number this time around. She said Michael's Arts & Crafts, the nationwide chain, has promoted "Caps For Good" in its stores.
"This might be our biggest year," Puskar said.
Puskar was impressed with the Brownies' work soon after they got started Tuesday.
"They're doing great. They're picking it up quickly," she said.
Valante said the goal was for each of the 12 Brownies to make at least two caps before they left Save The Children.