Royal Surrey County Hospital’s Special Care Baby Unit (SCBU) has received some very welcome deliveries courtesy of two incredible fundraising 4 year olds.

Pictured above L to R: Staff at Royal Surrey’s Special Care Baby Unit with Riley (L) and Emilia (R) showing some of the welcome packs

Riley Russell from Woking, but originally from Guildford, and Emilia Freeman from Guildford, each ran 2km in aid of the Guildford-based specialist unit.  They raised an impressive £220 for Positive Touch, a group of parents and staff who aim to raise funds to support families with special care babies.  Riley and Emilia’s sponsored run provided funding for much needed new welcome packs for parents of babies staying on the unit.  Despite their age, the enterprising children came up with the idea of taking on the grueling challenge themselves in an effort to help Royal Surrey’s most vulnerable babies.

Contained within the new packs they provided were essentials for parents needing to stay for prolonged periods of time at the hospital once their baby is born. These included notebooks, pens, hand cream, lip balm, a snack, tissues, water bottle and puzzle books. Some babies admitted into SCBU require high dependency care and parents may need to stay for weeks or months until their new arrival is well enough to be discharged.

Positive Touch was set up in 2012 by SCBU staff and parents whose babies have been cared for in the unit.  Volunteers from Positive Touch visit families in SCBU on a weekly basis, hold monthly coffee mornings for any families who have had a baby on SCBU and an opportunity to meet others and share experiences.  They also provide snacks for parents and families, welcome and discharge packs, milestone cards and graduation certificates.

Pictured above L to R: Royal Surrey’s superstar fundraisers Riley Russell and Emilia Freeman with staff from SCBU at Royal Surrey

Royal Surrey County Hospital’s SCBU Practice Development Sister, Fiona England said: “Riley and Emilia’s little steps have made such a difference to our new SCBU families.  The welcome packs have been made with the love and empathy of parents who understand what having a baby/babies on SCBU really feels like.  We feel very lucky here at Royal Surrey to have the support of Positive Touch helping us improve the experience of being on a Neonatal Unit for babies and their family.”

Themselves both having experienced the care of Royal Surrey’s Special Care Baby Unit when they born, the children explained why they wanted to take on the challenge.  Riley explained, “I wanted to buy the babies some bath toys.”

Four year old Emilia said, “I wanted to do the run so I could help raise money to help the poorly babies like mummy does.  We did two laps and got a certificate and a medal.”

For more information on Positive Touch and how you can help support their work at Royal Surrey County Hospital’s Special Care Baby Unit visit, find them on Facebook or email them on

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