North Stokes senior Alexis Haynes has taken her talent in crocheting to help premature infants stay warm. Haynes, who is the daughter of Marty and Tracie Haynes of Pinnacle, has made more than 30 caps for premature babies in the Neonatal Intensive Care Units (NICU) at Vidant Medical Center in Greenville.
“I just started doing it for fun,” Haynes said. “It was easy for me to bring my crocheting materials to school and crochet when I finished my work.”
“When I was in fifth grade, my friend Crystal Gwyn taught me to crochet. I was bored one day, and I ended up crocheting a little hat,” the teenager said. “I’ve made blankets for my family, but I had never donated anything before.”
Haynes said when she first started, it took her a little longer to crochet each hat, but now she can complete one in 30 to 40 minutes.
Recently her distance learning teacher, Jennifer Shore, suggested she donate them to a local NICU.
“About that time, my friend’s sister, who was only 25 weeks pregnant, went into the hospital. Her baby was only one pound, four ounces when she was born. That gave me the idea to donate the hats to the hospital where Autumn (Heath) would deliver.”
“When they’re that little, they have trouble regulating their temperatures, so the hats will serve the purpose of keeping them warm,” she added.
Heath, who is originally from Lawsonville, said, “It means a lot to us as parents that someone who has never met our children in person takes time and energy to make something so special. When you spend weeks, and even months, in the NICU, small gestures like a hat mean everything. Having a hat with character adds something special.”
Haynes plans to continue making the hats and giving back to families with littles ones in the hospital.
“When families are in difficult situations like that, the smallest gesture means the world to them.”