Project Sweet Peas is pleased to announce that the NICU Family Assistance Fund program will begin accepting applications this September, in honor of Neonatal Intensive Care Awareness Month. The fund will exist to assist families nationwide with costs during their stay in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) including transportation, lodging, and food.
In a 2014 Project Sweet Peas survey of over 500 parents, 91 percent cited experiencing financial strain during their time in the NICU. Almost three-quarters (73.6 percent) of these parents experienced loss of income, with 15.8 percent describing that they were laid-off or quit.
Only 5.7 percent of parents received financial assistance from the hospital. Community and governmental assistance also was uncommon with 7 percent receiving support from community sources (such as family or community organizations), and 13.2 percent from governmental sources.
Given this great need, Project Sweet Peas hopes to alleviate financial burden while parents endure a difficult journey in the NICU.
Consider making an investment to ensure that every family that reaches out is able to receive funding by making a gift today. Your gift, no matter the size, will help families stay together.
You may make a gift via credit card or paypal by selecting the "Donate" button below. Donations of $100 or more will be recognized in packets distributed to recipients of the fund.
Project Sweet Peas wishes to thank the following donors for their generous contributions to assist the fund's launch:
MVP Awards place a spotlight on those who give their time to help others and exemplify leadership, dedication and a commitment to improving their communities through volunteerism. Each year, the Kraft family and the New England Patriots Charitable Foundation host the awards program as part of the ongoing Celebrate Volunteerism initiative in honor of Myra Kraft’s example of being a lifelong volunteer.
On June 9, 26 volunteers were recognized for their contributions at a luncheon and awards ceremony at Gillette Stadium.
Each Community MVP received grants for their respective nonprofit organizations. Fifteen New England-based organizations were presented with $5,000 grants in honor of their volunteers’ work. Ten others received grants of $10,000 and one grand prize winner was presented $25,000.
“It is truly inspiring to hear the incredible stories of each Myra Kraft Community MVP Award winner,” said Patriots Chairman and CEO Robert Kraft. “Every volunteer has such a unique story about how they got involved in their community and it is very touching to learn about their impact. These individuals are making a lasting impact on a daily basis and we are excited to have the opportunity to thank each of them for their commitment. This is truly one of my favorite programs and I know Myra would be proud of the work each of these volunteers are doing.”
On hand to congratulate the award winners was Patriots Chairman and CEO Robert Kraft, New England Patriots Charitable Foundation President Joshua Kraft, Patriots and Pro Football Hall of Famer and Patriots Executive Director of Community Affairs Andre Tippett, and Patriots players including linebacker Jerod Mayo, tackle Nate Solder and kicker Stephen Gostkowski.
Corin Nava, Project Sweet Peas Treasurer and Co-Founder, was selected as a $5,000 third prize winner.
“Winning the Myra Kraft MVP Community MVP Award is a tremendous honor as it re-affirms the importance of the work that I have done and will continue to do in memory of my son, Gabriel,” said Nava.
After losing her first child to an undiagnosed congenital diaphragmatic hernia as an infant, Nava vowed to provide a much needed service to other families with children in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU). She co-founded the organization to help provide comfort to families experiencing the same challenges she faced with her first child.
“Corin’s exemplary service has brought support to countless New England parents enduring the difficult journey of life with a critically ill child and to families experiencing the unimaginable loss of a baby,” said Sarah King, President of Project Sweet Peas. “Her commitment has been vital to the development and growth of the organization. Project Sweet Peas is so proud of the difference Corin continues to make in the New England community. Her leadership, dedication, and spirit of generosity truly make her a Project Sweet Peas MVP and we are honored that her efforts are being celebrated in such incredible company.”
Nava works with hospital staff at several hospitals to discuss what resources they have and how she can help. She also puts together personal care packages and memory boxes that are hand delivered to families in the NICU. Nava serves as a support system and her volunteer efforts let families know that they are not alone.
“Volunteering has become a way of life for me,” said Nava. “It has enabled me to overcome the pain of losing a child, and allowed me to move forward in life. I may not be able to care for Gabe and watch him grow the way I had planned, but what I can do is focus that love and energy into helping others in his memory.”
The 2015 MVPs represent all six New England states, a variety of nonprofit organizations and range in age from 17 to 83 years old. The Kraft family and New England Patriots Charitable Foundation received a record number of applications this year from nonprofit organizations looking to recognize their outstanding volunteers. Nominations open each spring and the awards are open to all nonprofit organizations in the New England region. For more information on these awards, please visit www.patriots.com/community.
Patriots Chairman and CEO Robert Kraft and Patriots and Pro Football Hall of Famer Andre Tippett congratulate Corin Nava from Project Sweet Peas for being selected as a 2015 Myra Kraft Community MVP Award third prize winner. During the June 9 luncheon, the Kraft family and the New England Patriots Charitable Foundation awarded $200,000 in grants to 26 New England nonprofits. Project Sweet Peas received a $5,000 grant in honor of Nava’s volunteer efforts. Patriots Chairman and CEO Robert Kraft, Patriots Charitable Foundation President Joshua Kraft, and Patriots and Pro Football Hall of Famer Andre Tippett were joined by Patriots linebacker Jerod Mayo, kicker Stephen Gostkowski and tackle Nate Solder to celebrate their award on the field of Gillette Stadium. The 26 volunteer winners range from 17 to 83 years old, with one winner from each state in the region. Winning nonprofits provide support for many causes, including education, domestic violence resources, healthcare, homelessness, mentoring, military support and more.
Patriots Chairman and CEO Robert Kraft, Patriots Charitable Foundation President Joshua Kraft, and Patriots and Pro Football Hall of Famer Andre Tippett were joined by Patriots linebacker Jerod Mayo, kicker Stephen Gostkowski and tackle Nate Solder to celebrate their award on the field of Gillette Stadium. The 26 volunteer winners range from 17 to 83 years old, with one winner from each state in the region. Winning nonprofits provide support for many causes, including education, domestic violence resources, healthcare, homelessness, mentoring, military support and more.