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Night for the NICU at Bricker-Price on New Year’s Eve

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Cradling New Life, an organization which addresses the needs of families enduring pre-term labor, premature birth or other infant illnesses in Iowa’s Neonatal Intensive Care units is partnering with Bricker-Price Block in Earlham to provide an elegant evening on New Year’s Eve.

Cradling New Life

Members of The Cradling New Life organization gathered after delivering Christmas ornaments to the NICU units of Mercy One and Blank Children’s Hospital. Pictured from left are Nicole Stokes (Blank NICU Social Worker), Amanda Lindstrom (Vice President of Cradling New Life), Rafaela Johnson (Events Coordinator for Cradling New Life), Santa, Mindy Nelson (Area Director for Cradling New Life) and Shirley Fisher (Cradling New Life Volunteer).

A Night for the NICU will be held on Tuesday, Dec. 31, from 5 p.m.-1 a.m. at Bricker-Price Block (105 S. Chestnut Ave.). Tickets for the event range from $125 each or $800 for a table of eight, and are available through a link on their Facebook page.

Highlights of the evening include a five-course meal, cash bar and a cocktail hour. 

A horse drawn carriage and a photographer will be on hand for end of the year photo opportunities and a champagne toast to ring in the New Year. A presentation will be provided by Cradling New Life and they will welcome guest speaker Jodi Sears, a NICU mom who will share her experiences.

The Cradling New Life organization was the brainchild of Shane Nelson of Peru, as he and his wife, Mindy, struggled through her pregnancy as she prepared to give birth to twins. During pregnancy, confined to strict bed rest for 3.5 months, with 6.5 weeks of that time spent in the hospital, meant a loss of income for the couple. 

In addition, she was given steroid shots to develop the lungs of her unborn children and they were constantly monitored.


As Nelson became familiar with the NICU unit, witnessed its tiny occupants, and heard the heartbreaking experiences of other couples who were torn between work and hospital visits, who had bills piling up, he felt he needed to do something to provide some relief for them as they were going through such an unexpected event during what should be a joyous occasion.

After research and much conversation, Nelson’s employer IBEW Local 55 helped create the non-profit organization in an effort to give back to the community. They realized that many of their own employees had experienced the NICU through family and friends. So with their help, community involvement and seven willing board members, the rest is history! The Nelson’s, by the way, were able to welcome two healthy twins into the world. Although four weeks early, neither twin endured a NICU stay.

Five years after inception, Cradling New Life, has helped one hundred and fifteen families and has raised over one hundred and fifty-thousand dollars. Currently, they serve NICU families at Mercy One and Blank Children’s hospital. Continuing to grow their funds, in the future, they hope to expand their services to the University of Iowa Children’s Hospital in Iowa City.

Follow their organization on Facebook at Cradling New Life or if interested in making a donation it can be mailed PO Box 3407, Des Moines, Iowa 50316.    


Managing editor at the Madisonian.