What does Infant Crisis Services do?
Infant Crisis Services supplies life-sustaining formula and food as well as diapers and clothing for babies and toddlers in times of crisis. We assist more than 1,200 infants and toddlers per month.
How do you do this?
Strictly through private donations, grants and volunteer efforts. Infant Crisis Services receives no state, federal or United Way funding.
Is there really a need?
It is hard to imagine that there are babies and toddlers who go to bed hungry, yet it happens every day right here in Oklahoma. Our state has the 8th highest incidence of childhood poverty in the U.S. with 1 in 4 babies living in poverty. Infant Crisis Services is bridging the gap for families until they are back on their feet or until they become qualified for government programs such as WIC and DHS.
What does Infant Crisis Services provide?
Based on availability of items, Infant Crisis Services provides babies or toddlers with a weeks supply of diapers, formula, toddler food, a bottle, wipes, clothing, pajamas, socks, blanket and other miscellaneous items, an age-appropriate toy, and a book.
How can a family in need make use of Infant Crisis Services?
Please call ahead if possible to make an appointment. Appointments may be scheduled by calling (405) 528-3663. The baby must be present at the time of the visit. Our loving volunteers will be on-hand to help take care of your children while you “shop” for the items you need. Services are provided a maximum of four times per calendar year to children birth – 3 years.
There are no income limitations and no paperwork is needed.
Isn’t breast milk best for babies? Why do you provide formula rather than encouraging these new mothers to breastfeed?
Breastfeeding has been shown to have substantial benefits for babies, including decreased illness and a closer bond with their mother. But the choice to breast- or bottle-feed is a personal one, and is often dictated by culture, the mother’s desire and determination, or the need to supplement with formula as directed by a physician.
Infant Crisis Services encourages all clients who are currently breastfeeding to continue to do so, and provides them with everything available at the time that may help them.
The majority of our clients arrive at Infant Crisis Services when their child is at least one-week-old; in some cases, the baby may be as much as one or six months old. As much as we would love for more mothers to breastfeed, the reality is that by the time a client has arrived at Infant Crisis Services, they may have already ceased nursing. Once a mother has made the decision not to nurse, it is extremely difficult to begin nursing again, as related to that particular birth.
“Human milk is best for human babies, but when unavailable for any reason, a high quality infant formula which imitates milk will support optimal growth of the baby, and development of the brain, sensory and immune systems.” -Dr. Patrice Aston, Pediatric Consultant
Why doesn’t Infant Crisis Services provide cloth diapers rather than disposable diapers?
Infant Crisis Services will provide cloth diapers for families who request them, however cloth is usually not an option. Childcare centers require parents to leave disposable diapers with their child. In addition, families that can’t afford diapers often do not have washing machines and can’t afford bus fare to get to the laundromat, or money for the laundromat.
What is Infant Crisis Services’ stance on safe sleeping habits for infants and toddlers?
Infant Crisis Services recognizes the health risks associated with infants sleeping on their stomachs and works to educate clients about the benefits of placing babies on their backs to sleep. Infant Crisis Services supports and works to educate clients on the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development’s (NICHD) “Back to Sleep” initiative. We knows that placing babies on their backs to sleep rather than their stomach reduces the risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS), also known as “crib death,” and promote the NICHD’s Safe Sleep Top 10:
Always place your baby on his or her back to sleep, for naps and at night. The back sleep position is the safest, and every sleep time counts.
Place your baby on a firm sleep surface, such as on a safety-approved crib mattress, covered by a fitted sheet. Never place your baby to sleep on pillows, quilts, sheepskins, or other soft surfaces.
Keep soft objects, toys, and loose bedding out of your baby’s sleep area. Don’t use pillows, blankets, quilts, sheepskins, and pillow-like crib bumpers in your baby’s sleep area, and keep any other items away from your baby’s face.
Do not allow smoking around your baby. Don’t smoke before or after the birth of your baby, and don’t let others smoke around your baby.
Keep your baby’s sleep area close to, but separate from, where you and others sleep. Your baby should not sleep in a bed or on a couch or armchair with adults or other children, but he or she can sleep in the same room as you. If you bring the baby into bed with you to breastfeed, put him or her back in a separate sleep area, such as a bassinet, crib, cradle, or a bedside co sleeper (infant bed that attaches to an adult bed) when finished.
Think about using a clean, dry pacifier when placing the infant down to sleep, but don’t force the baby to take it. (If you are breastfeeding your baby, wait until your child is 1 month old or is used to breastfeeding before using a pacifier.)
Do not let your baby overheat during sleep. Dress your baby in light sleep clothing, and keep the room at a temperature that is comfortable for an adult.
Avoid products that claim to reduce the risk of SIDS because most have not been tested for effectiveness or safety.
Do not use home monitors to reduce the risk of SIDS. If you have questions about using monitors for other conditions talk to your health care provider.
Reduce the chance that flat spots will develop on your baby’s head: provide “Tummy Time” when your baby is awake and someone is watching; change the direction that your baby lies in the crib from one week to the next; and avoid too much time in car seats, carriers, and bouncers.
Infant Crisis Services
Donald W. Reynolds Center
4224 N. Lincoln Blvd
Oklahoma City, OK 73105