Support

BIBS funds a professional Family Support Practitioner that runs drop-in sessions three times a week. We also operate a Parent Support evening once a week run by volunteer former Buscot parents.

Facilities

BIBS manages and refurbishes parent and family facilities on the ward such as a family lounge and overnight accomodation.

Awareness

BIBS aims to raise awareness of the issues faced by parents and babies on the unit. We work with the hospital and other organisations to make this most stressful of journeys as smooth as possible.

Equipment

BIBS fundraises to help supply the latest technology and equipment that will aid in the care and development of babies on Buscot Ward.

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Nominated Charity of the year by the Sainsbury's in Calcot

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Here is the story of Irene, Steve and their superstar son Ed, who was born in August 2011 at just 25 weeks, weighing only 2 lbs. We have been so touched by the recent outpouring of appreciation for the BIBS Family Support Practitioner, Catherine Neil, that we have been inspired to share more stories, as told through the eyes of families she has helped. Where better to start than with one of the first families Catherine ever supported?

Ed’s extremely early birth came as a total shock. “It all happened so fast and I wasn’t sure what was going on at the time”, Irene says. “I just remember a doctor saying I’d had a baby boy, and then he was gone”. After the longest wait of their lives, the doctor came to tell the couple that Ed was very ill but stable and they could go up to Buscot to visit him. Irene says: “I had never seen such a unit before and I remember breaking down when I walked in and saw Ed”. Weeks of emotional highs and lows followed. The couple remember how fantastic the medical team were – explaining everything that happened to Ed and answering questions in detail.

But it was during Ed’s third week in special care that Catherine Neil started to visit the ward and made an instant impact, as Irene recalls: “She was warm, friendly, and easy to talk to. She was also very knowledgeable and answered a lot of my questions as to what I might expect in the weeks ahead. It was just wonderful as I could express my emotions in a way I hadn’t done previously. I learnt that Catherine’s son had been born prematurely - she understood me!”

“Catherine supported, encouraged, and reassured me during my lowest moments. At that stage, she only visited the ward on a Monday, but she emailed me regularly to see how I was doing in between visits. I remember inviting Catherine to sit with me by Ed’s bed. She was his first guest. She told me he looked good. I needed to hear this from another source.”

Catherine continued to support the family for another four and a half months, until Ed was finally discharged. But the care didn’t stop there, as Irene explains: “Catherine kept in contact with me after we left hospital and even visited us at home. The communication has never stopped! We still keep in touch by email. I could go on and on about Buscot and Catherine’s amazing service and I’m thrilled to hear she is still supporting parents and now three days a week - what an amazing woman!”

Now celebrating his 6th birthday, Ed is very well, healthy and a thriving energetic boy who loves sports. He loves cycling, skiing and football and is doing great at school too! Thank you so much for sharing your experience with us, Irene.

*If you want to share your story too, please contact BIBS through our Facebook Messenger*
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