Glyn became Chair of the established Lister Neonatal Unit Families Group after his son Max was born 12 weeks prematurely. He now spends his spare time volunteering to raise funds for the unit.

Glyn says ‘the experience of having a child born 12 weeks prematurely was a complete shock to us. The pregnancy had been going smoothly until Kelly experienced some bleeding and visited emergency triage at the Lister. She was admitted and after a few days went into labour’.

 At only 28 weeks pregnant, Kelly had a placental abruption and baby Max was born, weighing just under 3lb. He spent eight weeks being cared for in Lister’s neonatal unit and Kelly and Glyn spent every possible minute visiting Max, or waiting in the unit.

 ‘We found out later how lucky we were that Max choose to make an appearance, as this can be very dangerous for mother and child, Glyn continued, the whole experience was a massive rollercoaster of emotions and we could not have got through it without the expert care of the nursing staff who not only cared for Max but also counselled and cared for us’.

 Glyn said, “your whole life becomes centred around the hospital and that Unit becomes a second home. In some ways I felt happier when I was there because I could be close to my wife and new baby and everyone there understood what we were going through. During that time we met and became friends with other parents who were there and having time to chat through our various concerns was vital in getting through the experience”.

Baby Max is now a thriving five year old and, after his experience, Glyn became Chair of the established Lister Neonatal Unit Families Group. Currently he and the group are embarking on ambitious plans to fundraise to extend the neonatal units parents and family room. This will provide a much larger space with clusters of seating to provide parents with privacy, a play area for siblings to unwind and a kitchen area to cook and prepare food. The development also includes a male shower room. Currently there are no facilities for males to shower in maternity and so the shower room will be used by dads who are visiting or staying with mothers and babies during their time in hospital.

On behalf of the families group, Glyn said, “we, as parents, all know just how tough the experience of using the Neonatal Unit is. We can’t better the amazing care given to our children by the doctors and nursing staff but we can help to make that time in hospital a little more comfortable for families like us and give something back to the unit that helped us.”

Glynn and the Lister Neonatal Families Group have been shortlisted for the Community Champion Award in the Inspiring Hertfordshire Awards 2019.