FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – Nearly 50 percent of mothers in Allen County don’t receive the prenatal care they need in the first trimester, according to the organization Healthier Moms and Babies. The group aims to give women in low income families the care they need in early pregnancies.
In 2013, the county had 34 infant deaths. About 8.8 percent of babies born in 2012 in Allen County are born too soon, according to the Indiana State Department of Health. Healthier Moms and Babies cares for soon to be mothers before birth and for the first year of the infant’s life.
“It’s great for us to get out into the community, work with moms one-on-one and make sure they have access to prenatal care,” said Paige Wilkins, program manager of Healthier Moms and Babies.
On Wednesday, Healthier Moms and Babies held its 11th annual luncheon and silent auction to raise money for its services. During the event, attendees got a look at behind the scenes of stories and people who invested in the organization.
“We can’t do the work without the help of our supporters. So it’s great to have people who can help us financially, but also that can volunteer their time and help us get the word out about Healthier Moms and Babies,” Wilkins said.
NewsChannel 15’s Heather Herron served as the event’s emcee. She’s hosted the event for the last few years.
This year, Meg Distler of the St. Joseph Community Health Foundation received the Inspiration Award. A former Healthier Moms and Babies client was honored with the Kitty Shanahan Memorial Award during the luncheon. The organization honors two people each year who embody its goals.