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Newborns At Stony Brook Southampton Hospital Receive Thoughtful Gift In Honor Of Go Red For Women Campaign

Nicole Barylski

Barbara Poliwoda, Regional Director, American Heart Association; MaryAnn Dzenkowski, Volunteer, Peconic Landing; Wilma Gilkey, Volunteer, Peconic Landing; Linda Fox-Downey, RN, Nurse Manager, Kathleen D. Allen Maternity Center, with a two-day old newborn; and Marilyn Perrine, Volunteer, Peconic Landing. (Courtesy Photo)

A group of volunteers from Peconic Landing in Greenport has created a very special birthday present for newborns born in February at the Kathleen D. Allen Maternity Center at Stony Brook Southampton Hospital.

In honor of American Heart Association's Go Red for Women campaign, the talented knitters donated cozy red hats that they made themselves.

"These ladies are always looking to use their talents to help others. It's heartwarming to know these newborns will be going home with some love from Peconic Landing," said Robert J. Syron, President and CEO of Peconic Landing. "We wish these families health and happiness."

The volunteers, along with American Heart Association Regional Director Barbara Poliwoda, personally delivered the touching handmade gifts to the Hospital on Wednesday, February 7.

"The American Heart Association is grateful to the volunteers from Peconic Landing for their generous donation of hats to Stony Brook Southampton Hospital as part of the American Heart Association's Little Hats Big Hearts program to help celebrate American Heart Month during the month of February," reflected Jessica DiMeo, American Heart Association Senior Regional Director, Communications.

The volunteers show off the hats. (Courtesy Photo)

The Little Hats, Big Hearts program aims to inspire mothers to maintain heart-healthy habits and to encourage their children to do the same in honor of American Heart Month.

"Our Little Hats Big Hearts program allows the whole community to get involved," noted Poliwoda. "It allows volunteers to contribute their time and talent to create adorable hats that will be given to newborns and new mothers, all while raising awareness about congenital heart disease and the importance of living heart healthy."

"The hospital staff was nice enough to introduce us to a new mother who was so welcoming. To see the little baby girl wearing one of our hats was such a pleasure," shared Wilma Gilkey, a Peconic Landing member who spearheaded the Little Hats Big Hearts project. "It was a wonderful project. It inspired some new knitters to join us, and they want to keep on knitting which is a great success."

According to the American Heart Association, cardiovascular disease kills one American woman every 80 seconds, making efforts like the Go Red for Women campaign and American Heart Month vital. Go Red for Women's mission is to "encourage awareness of the issue of women and heart disease, and also action to save more lives." The campaign advises that those who want to be more heart healthy should follow an exercise routine, eat a healthier diet, regularly see your doctor for crucial tests and inspire others by discussing heart health. American Heart Month, a federally designated event, also focuses on raising awareness for heart health.

Nicole is the Editor-in-Chief of Hamptons.com where she focuses on lifestyle, nightlife, and mixology. She grew up in the Hamptons and currently resides in Water Mill. www.hamptons.com NicoleBarylski NicoleBarylski

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