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Event raises $80,000 for babies

Hundreds of families and business leaders joined thousands nationwide at the March of Dimes’ annual March for Babies at The Promenade Bolingbrook on May 1. The event raised more than $80,000. March for Babies is the nation’s oldest walk fundraiser honoring babies born healthy and those who need help to survive and thrive.

The Shaheen Family of Woodridge was the Ambassador Family for the March of Dimes Bolingbrook Event. At only 33 weeks, Evelyn Shaheen and husband Eddy delivered baby girl Niveen. Niveen was born Aug. 4, 2010, and stayed in Adventist Bolingbrook Hospital’s level II special care nursery for 25 days. Due to her premature lungs, she needed to be incubated and was given Curosurf to help her breath. Today, both mom and baby are home healthy and doing fine.

Funds raised by March for Babies in Illinois help support prenatal wellness programs, research grants, neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) family support programs and advocacy efforts for stronger, healthier babies.

News Reporter Sondra Solarte, of FOX's Good Day Chicago, served as emcee for the 2011 March for Babies Event at The Promenade Bolingbrook hosted by Adventist Bolingbrook Hospital and American Family Insurance. Gordon Biersch Brewery & Restaurant served as registration host, providing healthy snacks prior to the walk. The 2011 national March for Babies sponsors are: Cigna, Farmers Insurance, FedEx, Famous Footwear, Sanofi Pasteur, Continental Airlines, and Kmart – the March of Dimes number one corporate partner. Additional sponsorship was provided by Verizon Wireless, Costco and Charlotte then & Now Foundation.

Every year in America, more than a half million babies are born prematurely, only 50 percent of cases with known medical reasons. Some go on to lead healthy lives, but many do not, living with life long disabilities. The mission of the March of Dimes is to improve the health of babies by preventing birth defects, premature birth and infant mortality. In Illinois, 91 cents of every dollar raised goes directly back to the March of Dimes to help find the cures for the mission. The March of Dimes is the leading nonprofit organization for pregnancy and baby health. With chapters nationwide and its premier event, March for Babies, the March of Dimes works to improve the health of babies by preventing birth defects, premature birth and infant mortality. For the latest resources and information, visit or