This U.S. State has the worst outcomes in the developed world for women having babies.

This past weekend, CBS ran an updated version of a piece that first aired in April 2023 on the maternal mortality rate in the South. This latest piece, In Louisiana, pregnant women struggle to get maternal health care, and the situation is getting worse, once again highlights the facts surrounding maternal mortality in the US […]

The Consequences of the Abortion Ban

By Sarah Beach In the news this week I found an article in Time that shocked me, as it stood out from all of the tough news we see every day. My work with First Candle, which deals with infant loss through its work to end Sudden Unexpected Infant Death (SUID) and its support for […]

A SIDS risk reduction practice is threatened.

At First Candle we are committed to promoting activities and practices that help to reduce the rate of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) One of these is breastfeeding.  Not only does breastfeeding reduce the rate of SIDS by 50% and is recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) but breastfeeding helps mom recover quicker […]

Statement on new AAP Guidelines and CPSC final rule on safe sleep

Today, the new safe sleep recommendations were released by the American Academy of Pediatrics. On Thursday the Consumer Products Safety Commission’s new federal rule goes into effect that states the only products that can be marketed for infant sleep are cribs, bassinets, play yards and bedside sleepers.  And last month President Biden signed the Safe […]

Andrew F. Rubenstein, M.D. Named to First Candle Board of Directors

Andrew F. Rubenstein, MD, MPH, has joined the Board of Directors of New Canaan-based First Candle, it was announced by CEO Alison Jacobson and Board Chair David Cunningham. Dr. Rubenstein is the newly appointed Chair, Obstetrics and Gynecology for the Dignity Health Medical Group at Saint Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center (SJHMC) in Phoenix, Arizona. This […]

Racism Must End for The Sake of Our Babies – #everybabycounts

First Candle is committed to ensuring that every baby gets to his or her first birthday and beyond.  Far too many babies are still dying and sadly a disproportionate number are Black babies.  What’s more, Black mothers are 3x more likely to die during or immediately after childbirth. The stress of structural racism is a […]

What Parents Need to Know About the Coronavirus

Needless to say,  everyone is nervous about the Coronavirus but there is always a great deal of misinformation that can spread.  We asked First Candle’s Board of Director Dr. John Cianella, Director of the Division of Neonatology at Stamford Health to provide us with the facts to share with our community: Human Coronaviruses are a […]

Brian Scruton Joins First Candle Board of Directors

Brian Scruton has been appointed to the Board of Directors of New Canaan-based First Candle, it was announced by CEO Alison Jacobson and Board Chair David Cunningham. Mr. Scruton is a director in Cushman & Wakefield’s Leasing Services Group, in the firm’s Stamford, CT office, where he specializes in tenant and landlord representation services in […]

Breaking Down Barriers for Moms and Babies

By Holly Schepisi Vice President of Vice Development, Holy Name Medical Center President, Holy Name Medical Center Foundation New Jersey has long been a leader in healthcare delivery, except for maternal and infant health, particularly among African Americans. The racial disparity in maternal and infant health is the widest in the nation as African American […]

Mathew’s Story

It has been 10 years since William Thomas Ellerbrock, age nine-and-a-half weeks, was dropped off for his second day of daycare and put down for a nap. It has been 10 years since baby William never woke up. It has been 10 years, but not a day goes by that his parents – Matthew and […]

Stamford Health Supports Team First Candle

2019 TCS New York City Marathon Sponsor Stamford Health has awarded a $2,500 sponsorship in support of First Candle, which is an Official Charity Partner of the 2019 TCS New York City Marathon, according to First Candle CEO Alison Jacobson. “We’re honored to have Stamford Health’s support for Team First Candle in this year’s marathon,” Jacobson […]

Please welcome Natasha Ray to the First Candle Board of Directors

Natasha Ray, M.S., has been appointed to the Board of Directors of New Canaan-based First Candle, it was announced by CEO Alison Jacobson and Board Chair David Cunningham. Ray is the Core Services Manager for the New Haven Healthy Start Program at The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven. She has been with New Haven […]

First Candle’s SIDS and Safe Sleep Training Program Now Accredited

Five Contact Hours Available to Nurses First Candle, the national non-profit committed to ending Sudden Infant Death Syndrome and other sleep-related infant deaths has now been approved for accreditation of their Straight Talk for Infant Safe Sleep training program.  SIDS remains the leading cause of death for babies one month to one year of age […]

New Report Concludes No Evidence That Baby Boxes Are Safe or Effective in Reducing SIDS

A new report was released today in the Public Health Reports: SAGE Journals looking at the safety and efficacy of baby boxes. Baby boxes are cardboard boxes that were first used in Finland for infants to sleep in during naps and at nighttime as part of an initiative to reduce the rate of Sudden Infant […]

2019 TCS New York City Marathon Bibs to Benefit Sudden Infant Death Syndrome Charity

First Candle, the national non-profit committed to ending Sudden Infant Death Syndrome and other sleep-related infant deaths, has once again been named an Official Charity Partner of the 2019 TCS New York City Marathon. The race will take place on Sunday, November 3, 2019.  For those runners who did not get a bib through the lottery, […]

Neonatologist John F. Ciannella joins First Candle Board of Directors

We are thrilled to announce that John F. Ciannella, MD has joined the First Candle Board of Directors. Dr. Ciannella is a fellowship-trained and board-certified neonatologist who since 2008 cares for newborn infants, specifically, babies who are born premature or diagnosed with complex medical and rare conditions and those who are critically ill. Dr. Ciannella […]

Study Identifies Unique Long-Term Grief Experienced by SIDS Moms

Prolonged grief disorder (PGD) is common, distressing and persistent in mothers whose infants have died from Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) and have lasting implications for their health and well-being.  This comes from a study released today in Pediatrics that was conducted by Dr. Rick Goldstein, Program Director, Robert’s Program on Sudden Unexpected Death in […]

American Legion Awards Grant to Non-Profit First Candle

  Grant Supports Charity’s Mission of Saving Babies’ Lives  January 30, 2018 – New Canaan, CT – On Saturday Alison Jacobson, the Executive Director of First Candle, attended the Mid-Winter Conference of the American Legion’s Connecticut Chapter where she accepted the first half of a $16,000.00 Child Welfare Grant.  First Candle is the national non-profit […]

First Candle Joins the Global #GivingTuesday Movement with #GivingFirst Camapign

First Candle has joined the Newman’s Own Foundation $500k Holiday Challenge and #GivingTuesday, a fundraising competition on the global day of giving. #GivingTuesday harnesses the collective power of individuals, communities, and organizations to encourage philanthropy and to celebrate generosity worldwide. On #GivingTuesday, The Newman’s Own Foundation is awarding $85,000 to the top three organizations to […]

Here’s why we’re thankful for you this year

                Dear Supporters, Thanks to you, this year we: provided over 600 families with a safe place for their baby to sleep; educated over 5,000 daycare providers, social workers and parents on why placing babies alone in a crib with no blankets can reduce the risk of SIDS […]

Therapy Within Reach, Apply Now

Miscarriage, stillbirth, and infant loss can be one of the most devastating and isolating experiences a parent can face. Thanks to a generous donor, we have started a lottery program to waive the lifetime membership fee to Open Path Collective. Your lifetime membership will allow you to receive psychotherapy sessions that range from $30 to $50 a […]

Missing a Special Day

By Missy Ortman, A Little Pink Lemonade For eight years we have had a yearly tradition of participating in a yearly walk/run in memory of babies lost too soon to SIDS.  Our “Pink Lemonade” team has been there since the run’s first year.  Our tradition each year was to take our family picture with Clara’s sign. […]

Diplomas help turn tragedy into triumph at Cal State Dominguez Hills

On May 27, the family will hold a fundraising block party for the CJ First Candle, at “Legend’s Lemonade Stand.” For a $25 donation, lunch and lemonade will be provided from 2-7 p.m. at 315 W. 20th St. in Long Beach. To donate to Legend’s memorial fund, click here.  By Sandy Mazza, Daily Breeze POSTED: […]

Baby Boxes – What Parents Must Know

Baby Boxes, free sturdy boxes with a firm mattress, a waterproof cover and a fitted sheet, are being provided to new parents in an effort to reduce infant mortality rates nationwide. These boxes are intended to serve as a safe sleep area when a traditional and recommended sleep area is not available to the parents.  As the […]

The Rate of SIDS drops…but there’s still work to do

Today the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released a report announcing that infant mortality rates have dropped by 15% and the rate of SIDS by 29%.  That’s a huge success for those of us working in the field of infant health and survival. While this should be celebrated, there’s still a great deal of […]

Our Director of Education, Barb Himes, Wins Award!

Congratulations to Barb Himes, CJ First Candle Director of Education and Training, on her Community Health Network Safety Award! Barb and her team from Community Hospital East in Indianapolis, IN, were awarded for their “Early Initiation of Pumping at Community East Maternity”. They developed a strategy to get mothers of all breastfed babies admitted to the […]