New study and AAP commentary support First Candle’s community-driven safe sleep program.

Today, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) released a study on the rate of Sudden Unexpected Infant Death (SUID) during the pandemic (2019-2020). The rate of SUID overall remained the same from previous years but the rate among Black infants increased.  The rates of SUID for infants born to Black families is now 2.3 times […]

Statement From First Candle on The Safe Use of Infant Products for Sleep.

As the leading non-profit organization in the fight to end Sudden Unexpected Infant Death (SUID), one of our primary responsibilities is to consistently educate parents about the safe and proper use of infant products. We know that many SUID deaths have some element of unsafe sleep, either where the baby is sleeping or something in […]

Sudden Unexpected Infant Death (SUID) and Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) – What’s the difference?

Safe sleep practices are a safeguard for both Recently, people have started to use two different phrases, Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) and Sudden Unexpected Infant Death (SUID) interchangeably. There is a difference however: SUID is the death of an infant less than 1 year of age that occurs suddenly and unexpectedly.  There are three […]

First Candle Receives Grant from W.K. Kellogg Foundation

First Candle, the national non-profit committed to ending Sudden Unexpected Infant Deaths (SUID), has announced it is undertaking an initiative to collect input from communities of color to and share with the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) as it updates the Safe Sleep Guidelines, for release in 2021.

Message to grieving parents – It gets better..somewhat

16 years ago my son died from Sudden Infant Death Syndrome.  He was 3 mos. and 24 days old.  That day, I wasn’t sure how, or even if, I wanted to survive.  I hardly remember anything from the days leading up to his memorial service and even less of the service itself and the sea […]

Matthew Ellerbrock, a SIDS dad and our NYC Marathon runner

On Sunday, November 3rd, our team of runners will test their endurance running in the New York City Marathon. Each one of them has their own reason for running and we’d like to introduce you to them because they are truly inspirational. It has been 10 years since William Thomas Ellerbrock, age nine-and-a-half weeks, was […]

2019 TCS New York City Marathon Runner with a SIDS Campaign

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 […]

Why black families aren’t getting messages about safe sleep and SIDS

Sudden Infant Death Syndrome and accidental suffocation claim the lives of over 3,600 babies every year in this country.  These numbers haven’t moved in years and the racial disparity is great.   The rates of SIDS and accidental suffocation are nearly three times higher among black babies.  Why?  We know that by adopting the safe sleep […]

When a baby dies, dads are often forgotten

At First Candle we offer bereavement support services to families who have lost a baby to Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS), other sleep-related infant deaths, still birth and miscarriage.  We have a 24-hour grief line, bereavement materials, volunteer peer-support providers and, most importantly our online support groups.  While our online groups are large and active, […]

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 […]

Important Legislation for SIDS

We at First Candle are reaching out to let you know of a promising piece of legislation now under review by the U.S. Congress, focused on improving resources devoted to improving better understanding and awareness around unexpected sudden death early in life, including SIDS and other sleep-related infant deaths. Known as Scarlett’s Sunshine Act (H.R. […]

Breastfeeding Significantly Reduces the Risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome

This week is World Breastfeeding Week and at First Candle we are actively working to get the message out about the benefits of breastfeeding.  This is something we discuss in our Straight Talk for Infant Safe Sleep programs and were surprised that over 66% of participants in our trainings weren’t aware that breastfeeding can significantly […]

2018 International Conference on Stillbirth, SIDS & Baby Survival – Straight Talk for Infant Safe Sleep

In June 2018,  Barbara Himes, our Director of Education and Training, attended the 2018 International Conference on Stillbirth, SIDS and Baby Survival in Glasgow, Scotland, where she presented our program, Straight Talk for Infant Safe Sleep, to a gathering of health care professionals, parents and SIDS researchers from around the world. She stressed Straight Talk’s […]

When Life Changed Forever — Remembering Dylan Robert McEwen

My son, Dylan Robert, was born on November 2, 2010, at 38 weeks and was a happy and healthy baby boy. I had the pleasure of spending those first months of his life doing all the things new mothers do. I returned to work and put Dylan in daycare for a few days a week. […]

We Need to Start Talking About SIDS

Last week a study came out with the disturbing finding that less than half of parents surveyed consistently and exclusively put their baby on his or her back to sleep. This unfortunately supports the concern of First Candle that a large percentage of parents either believe that “SIDS has been solved” or that the risk of SIDS compared to […]

First Candle Supports Room Sharing to Reduce Risk of SIDS

  As the leading national non-profit organization committed to eliminating Sudden Infant Death Syndrome and other sleep-related infant deaths, we feel it’s important to respond to a new study on room sharing released today. The new study analyzed surveys from 230 first-time mothers who delivered at Penn State and found that babies slept for longer […]

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 […]

Join Us For The First Annual Forsythia Classic in Simsbury, CT

Join CJ First Candle on May 6, 2017 for the First Annual Forsythia Classic – William’s Memorial Golf Tournament at Simsbury Farms Golf Course in Simsbury, CT. This memorial golf tournament is in honor of William Fountain. William passed away due to SIDS on May 7, 2013 — just five short days after his birth. All […]

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 […]