Kerri Norris is the Winner of our 2014 Premmie Hero Volunteer Awards
Keri and her family have endured the very raw and emotional heartache of losing a child after her son, Harrison, died suddenly in 2013 at the age of 8 weeks and 5 days from SIDS and her own personal journey of the NICU having recently given birth to her third premature baby.
Harrison left behind two brothers and one sister who were in need of emotional support. Children suffer the grieving process at times alone and silently as they watch their parents and family members grieve. Watching her own children grieve the loss of their baby brother, led Keri to start Walk With Wings, an organisation situated in South Australia. With a personal understanding that children who have suffered the loss of a loved one require support, someone outside of the family to ‘walk‘ with them on their journey of grief, the organisation provides a network of support for these children. Grieving children, who can support each other, empower and understand each other and assist each other in finding their wings of hope, dreams and future joy.
Keri has been instrumental in implementing services and programs for the organisation. They provide Angelcare Sound and Movement Monitors for free to parents who have a baby born before 37 weeks gestation in South Australia. Keri along with her team of volunteers also provide training on their monitors and teach parents CPR in case of an emergency, compassionate and grief counseling for families in NICU and, the establishment of a group support for children between the ages of 5 and 18 years of age who have suffered and experienced the death of a loved one.
Keri and her husband, James, are great supporters in raising funds not only for Walk with Wings but also other charities including SIDS and Kids, SA and Heartfelt through the charities ‘Harri’s Walk with Wings’ annual event, where participants walk 80kms honouring Harrisons precious life. Every 10kms walked, represents the 8 precious weeks of life which Harrison spent with his family. So far, they have raised close to $5,000 through their annual event.
Keri has recently given birth to her third premature baby, Oliver born at 36 Weeks gestation and continues to volunteer her time and dedication to the cause. She believes that if she could possibly save one family the heart ache they endured after the loss of her son through the services she provides, then what she has been inspired to do in helping other families, is a reward itself all whilst honouring the life of her precious son and prematurely born children.
Congratulations to Keri and thank you!
Keri has won a $500 Accor Accommodation gift card, two movie tickets, a uniquely designed trophy, a framed certificate and her story will be featured in an upcoming issue of Practical Parenting Magazine in 2015.
Keri was nominated by Rosa Perre.