The annual Walk for Prems will be held in nine locations across Australia during the month of October to raise vital funds and awareness for the 48,000 babies born premature or sick in Australia each year.
Now in its fourteenth year, Walk for Prems is the largest fundraiser for the Life’s Little Treasures Foundation - Australia’s foremost charity dedicated to supporting the families of babies born sick or before 37 weeks gestation - and is proudly presented by Baby Bunting.
This year, the event is being held in Hobart, Bendigo, Ballarat, Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane, Canberra, Adelaide and Perth. Once again, a virtual walk option is also available, offering registrants the freedom and flexibility to participate, regardless of their location.
CEO of Life’s Little Treasures Foundation, Felicia Welstead, says: “In this time where the cost of living is increasing, parents of premature and sick babies have been doing it especially tough. Not just struggling with feelings of isolation and uncertainty, they are now also facing significant financial worries.”
“More than ever, these families need our support. That’s why we are encouraging the community to step up and step out to help raise awareness and much needed funds so we can continue to support families with premature and sick babies and make a real difference to their lives.”
Walk for Prems has raised 3.8 million dollars since its inception, without any significant funding from government, and this year Life’s Little Treasures Foundation hopes to raise $500,000 for families in need.
“The funds raised will go towards providing families with practical support through items such as fuel, accommodation and food vouchers, breakfast boxes during their hospital stay and emotional support by ensuring we can host in-hospital morning teas and our online NICU Connections parent support groups.”
“Even as little as $10 goes a long way, enabling us to provide a family with our comprehensive hospital booklet to help inform them during this vulnerable time,” explains Ms. Welstead.
Regardless of whether participants will be walking in person or virtually, the day will be filled with fun for the whole family.
“Walk for Prems is a wonderfully inclusive and supportive community event and we have lots of competitions and activities on the day to entertain walkers of all ages,” says Ms. Welstead.
At many locations, a remembrance ceremony will also take place in remembrance of those families who have lost a baby.
HOW TO REGISTER: People can register themselves, a team or sponsor a friend at www.walkforprems.org.au.
Each registrant receives a race bib and a 2023 Walk Medal. A selection of Walk for Prems merchandise including T-shirts, branded shoelaces and drink bottles are available for purchase online and on the day.
DONATE: If you’d like to make a donation to Life’s Little Treasures Foundation, visit www.lifeslittletreasures.org.au. All donations over $2 are tax deductible.
Remembrance Ceremony: 10.25am – white doves or bubbles are released to remember babies that did not survive
Thank you speeches: 12pm
Hobart Sunday 1 October 2023 Montrose Foreshore Community Park, Hobart
Canberra Sunday, 8 October 2023 Lake Tuggeranong, Tuggeranong Town Park, Bartlett Place, Greenway
Bendigo Sunday, 8 October 2023 Lake Weeroona (central lawns) - Napier St (Midland Hwy)
Ballarat Sunday, 15 October 2023 Lake Wendouree, Ballarat
Adelaide Sunday, 15 October 2023 Peace Park, Sir Edwin Smith Dve, North Adelaide
Sydney Sunday, 22 October 2023 Rushcutters Bay Park, New South Head Road, Edgecliff
Melbourne Sunday, 22 October 2023 Albert Park, Palms Lawn
Perth Sunday, 22 October 2023 Burswood Park, Matagarup, Causeway Loop, Perth
Brisbane Sunday, 22 October 2023 Decker Park, Brighton, Brisbane
Note: Brisbane event timings are one-hour earlier than noted above
HOW LIFE’S LITTLE TREASURES HELPS FAMILIES:
In 2022/2023, Life’s Little Treasures Foundation provided:
192 families with financial assistance packages to the value of $250 per family
information and resources to 149 Hospitals, including 1556 Precious Prem Packs and over 2500 ‘Little Bag of Calm’ to distribute to new parents
4,260 breakfast boxes with a fortnightly Brekkie Bar available in 8 hospitals around the country
124 sessions of our virtual ‘NICU Connections’ event facilitated by trained peer support volunteers; and
21,974 milestone gifts sent to families in celebration of Mother‘s Day, Father’s Day, Christmas etc.
By registering for Walk for Prems 2023 or donating, participants will be assisting Life’s Little Treasures Foundation in continuing to provide essential products and services to families in need in 2023/2024.
THE WALK FOR PREMS THANKS ITS EVENT PARTNERS:
Presenting Partner: Baby Bunting
Major Sponsors: Britax, Aspire Early Education and Kindergarten
Sponsors: Haakaa and Thread The Word.
State Partner: Victorian Government (Melbourne, Bendigo and Ballarat events)