It is hard to believe that L’il Aussie Prems is 2 years old this month, then again at times i can believe it. There have been MANY MANY late nights of going to bed from 2am onwards just updating the site, adding new content, making sure everything is working and backing everything up. Thankfully i have two children (Ronan – 3yrs old & Tristan 4 months old) that love sleep so i still get plenty of rest at night myself.
When i started LAP in March 2007 my first son Ronan was a year old. Being a stay at home mum just wasn’t enough for me and i wanted to do more within the premature baby community. I had a coffee with a friend, Nicole and told her my vision about starting up a support site. She shared my vision and we decided to think about names. We both threw around a few names and for some reason the name L’il Aussie Prems just jumped into my head. It suited the vision we shared with offering support and the site was born. That same night before bed i had purchased the domain name, organised hosting, and was already starting to work on the sites design, layout and content and adding it all online. When i have an idea i like to implement it straight away and get things going, as my friends know! I don’t like to wait around.
Within a week the site was live and i was promoting LAP everywhere and anywhere i could. Many parenting and women magazines very kindly supported the site and featured LAP in their magazines which i am very grateful for. The premmie baby forum took a while to gain membership but most forums do. At times i felt like i was talking to myself and members came online in dribs and drabs. Once the forum gained a few “regulars” it all took off from there. The forum now has 742 members and over 120,000 posts which is just AMAZING. With the members dedication and support the site has become a very busy community. One thing i believe in is if people want to help, let them. If your members have an idea – listen and implement their ideas. The site is run by not only myself but also the members. The members are what make LAP the community with heart and their voices are as loud as mine so working together is something i have always believed in and that also includes other support sites and charities. Working towards the same goal, supporting families of premature babies is what we all aspire to and working together helps families find the support they need much quicker. In between LAP i am on the committees of Lifes Little Treasures and the National Premmie Foundation . You can always be sure to find me online doing something whether it is for LAP or those two charities. My work is never done. 🙂
LAP has achieved so much in the past 2 years and i am so proud of how far that vision has grown. LAP has implemented so many new features over the past year from birth announcements, premmie of the moment, premmie parents of the moment, monthly premmie newsletters, and most recently the local premmie hero awards plus many more.. The site is forever evolving as more ideas come to ahead. The local premmie hero awards came together after a small team of parents (inc myself) threw around ideas on what LAP could do to fill in that gap in the beginning of the year where there were no celebrations for premmie babies and their families. We decided to open the awards to all Australians and we have received some amazing nominations to date. We encourage everyone who knows a volunteer to nominate them for their selfless efforts with helping families of premature babies.
LAP will continue to grow and support families throughout Australia. We are in the process of organising and designing our very own unique premmie baby car signs (with suction cup) dedicated to our little ones. Prices are $10.00 for members and $13.00 for non members. If you are interested in purchasing one please fill out our online form with your expression of interest. (please see pic below)
I hope you can help us celebrate LAP’s 2nd Birthday. I always welcome ideas and support so please contact me if you wish to help as i would love to hear from you.