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Bernadette Darcy, 2020 Pure Foundation Fund winner with her trophy
newborns

WaterWipes Pure Foundation Fund 2020 – Your winners revealed!

WaterWipes

5 minutes

18/03/2021

WaterWipes is proud to announce that healthcare heroes Kezia Alex, nominated by new mum Rebecca Moodie, and Bernadette Darcy, nominated by first-time mum Michelle Filan, have been awarded the WaterWipes 2020 Pure Foundation Fund. Read on to hear their inspiring stories, detailing how they went above and beyond to provide exceptional care and compassion.

UK Winner

Kezia’s story - nominated by Rebecca Moodie

Kezia Alex, a senior neonatal sister at Homerton University Hospital, was nominated by Rebecca Moodie for her incredible support of Rebecca’s young son, Dylan. Dylan was admitted into Homerton University Hospital Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) after being born prematurely, at just 24 weeks.

Dylan NICU - Rebecca Moodie’s newborn baby sleeping

“When my husband and I presented at our local hospital at 23 weeks, we were told there was nothing that could be done for our precious baby boy, Dylan” said mum Rebecca. “Fast forward 6 months and we have a happy and healthy little boy who is thriving. Our journey took us across 5 hospitals, 3 counties and 116 days, which is more than enough time for us to tell you that all neonatal nurses are special, but Kezia is one we will never forget!”

Kezia immediately stood out because she was the first nurse to call Dylan by his name. She also did something small but amazing – she gave us purpose.

Rebecca Moodie

"My husband and I would spend our days staring at him through the glass window of the NICU, watching as machines breathed for him and wires covered his tiny body. Kezia must have noticed; she gave us a list of things we could bring for Dylan and talked us through simple daily tasks like changing his nappy. Little did she know, this was exactly what we needed to ignite the fighting spirit in us. For the first time, we felt like parents and were part of the story rather than just observers.”

Kezia continued to go above and beyond for the Moodie’s, arranging opportunities for them to cuddle Dylan for the first time and spend precious moments together as a family - something that hadn’t been possible due to COVID-19 and social distancing rules.

Kezia Alex of Homerton University Hospital is the 2020 winner of the Pure Foundation Fund and Rebecca Moodie’s baby Dylan during Christmas

Responding to the recognition, Kezia said, “Rebecca’s nomination was a huge surprise. I’m really overwhelmed and grateful for the recognition and the bursary fund, which will help to improve our unit and make life more comfortable for the new parents who spend so much time with us in those first precious few months of their babies’ lives.”

Irish winner:

Bernadette’s story - nominated by Michelle Filan

Bernadette Darcy, a midwife at Mayo University Hospital, was nominated by Michelle Filan for her outstanding support when Michelle gave birth to her son, Coby. Things took a dramatic turn after Michelle gave birth, when she suffered an aneurysm leading to serious memory loss with no recollection of having her baby.

Michelle Filan with newborn son and Bernadette Darcy, 2020 Pure Foundation Fund winner with her trophy

“Words can’t express how thankful we are to Bernadette during this very worrying time”, said Michelle. “Bernie was actually finished her shift but stayed specifically to help me. When I awoke after the seizure, I was surrounded by many different medical professionals. I was hugely confused, I had no sense of where I was, who anyone was or any memory of having a baby.

Bernie was the only person through my confused and terrified state that I could connect with. Even with the terror I felt, I could sense the kindness in her eyes trying to help me remember who I was and what had happened”.

“I was lucky, I came around and my memory improved, but I came through it thanks to the support of Bernie and all the maternity care team at MUH."

My Guardian Angel Bernie cared for me and my son Coby with dignity and respect throughout my hospital stay and I can’t thank her enough.

Michelle Filan

Overwhelmed by the award, Bernadette said: “I had no idea that Michelle had nominated me, so it was a pleasant surprise when I got the call from WaterWipes informing me that I was selected as a winner of the Pure Foundation Fund! Our patients are at the forefront of everything we do, so to be nominated for this award by a new mother that I cared for means so much to me. Thank you so much to the WaterWipes Pure Foundation Fund – this prize will go a long way in benefiting our department and the work that we do.”

Celebrating our healthcare heroes

WaterWipes developed the Pure Foundation Fund bursary scheme to recognise and celebrate the incredible healthcare heroes who care for new parents and babies.

Kezia was selected as the winner by a panel of WaterWipes representatives, Caroline Lee-Davey, Chief Executive of Bliss, the leading charity for babies born premature or sick, and expert midwife, Marie-Louise Hurworth. The judges were incredibly moved by Rebecca’s story and inspired by Kezia’s outstanding commitment, understanding and compassion.

Bernadette was selected as the Irish winner by a panel of WaterWipes representatives and by Karen McGowan, President of the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation (INMO); Dr Edward Mathews, Director of Professional and Regulatory Services, INMO; and Mandy Daly, Director of Advocacy and Policymaking of the Irish Neonatal Health Alliance (INHA). The judges were very impressed with Bernadette’s commitment to aiding Michelle’s recovery from such an unexpected occurrence.

To celebrate their outstanding work, both Kezia and Bernadette have been awarded a Pure Foundation Fund plaque and a bursary fund for their department to improve the care of parents and babies. Both Rebecca and Michelle received a six-month supply of the new WaterWipes 100% biodegradable* wipes for nominating the winning entries and sharing their amazing stories.

WaterWipes would like to congratulate Kezia and Bernadette and thank all the new and expectant parents who nominated their healthcare heroes. The Pure Foundation Fund will return later this year, so don’t forget to follow us on social media and keep an eye on the homepage to be the first to know when 2021 nominations open.

About WaterWipes

WaterWipes are the world’s purest baby wipes, made with 99.9% water and a drop of fruit extract, they are proven to be purer than cotton wool and water. WaterWipes are now 100% biodegradable, plant-based and compostable* wipes. For more information on WaterWipes, please visit the WaterWipes homepage.

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* Within 12 weeks in an industrial setting/plant in accordance with EN13432. Wipe material. Parents should refer to their local council for details on disposing of baby wipes.

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