a safe sleep option for Houston babies
New Zealand pods for Houston babies
Early in October, 2017, 1000 baby beds - called Pepi-Pods - arrived in Houston from New Zealand as a humanitarian response to the impact of Hurricane Harvey.
Concern for infant life in the aftermath of disaster is always a public health concern. The demands of development - for food, protection, comfort - must still be met amidst the disruption to living and sleeping, and the displacement of families.
What is a Pepi-pod?
A Pepi-Pod is an emergency baby bed. 'Pepi' means baby in Maori and a pod is symbolic of protection in nature. These portable baby beds offer a zone of protection for babies when they sleep in, or on, adult beds, on couches, whenever make-shift beds are needed or babies are away from their usual place of sleeping.
Why are they needed?
Even in ordinary times, the needs of infants have an urgent quality about them. But when disaster strikes, babies become particularly vulnerable. One such need is for safety considerations when sleeping. The portable infant beds enable parents to provide a safe sleep environment for babies during a critical stage of development when airways and breathing need particular protection.
Where can I find out more?
The links and resources listed here may be useful to relief teams, midwives, family professionals and others involved in supporting families with newborns, as well as to families themselves.
How can we magnify the impact?
We ask that parents share their pods, and what they may learn about airway safety, with other families and babies in need, once their own baby has outgrown their pod.
Thank you to all involved!