About Our Babies...
ABC Quilts stands for "At-risk Baby Crib Quilts" and we define at-risk as meaning babies born HIV/AIDS positive; with Fetal Alcohol Syndrome; affected by their mothers drug use while pregnant; or babies abandonded.
What follows is a brief description of these conditions. We encourage you to seek in-depth sources of information for greater understanding. The Center for Disease Control is a great website to start with. It contains a range of information from general to very detailed statistics. Check it out at www.cdc.gov.
AIDS stands for acquired immunodeficiency syndrome, and is caused by the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). This virus is passed from one person to the next through sexual contact and blood to blood contact. Infected pregnant women can pass HIV to their babies during pregnancy or delivery, as well as through breast feeding. Most people with HIV will develop AIDS as a result of their HIV infection.
It is estimated that one in four AIDS infections occurs in people under age 22. AIDS is the leading cause of death in the US for men and women between the ages of 25 and 44. Because it may take as many as 5 to 10 years before the infection is diagnosed, most of these young adults would have contracted the disease while in their teens.
Fetal Alcohol Syndrom FAS
Fetal Alcohol Syndrome is the number one cause of PREVENTABLE mental retardation and developmental disabilities in the US. It is three times more likely to occur than Downs Syndrome, and eight times more likely to occur than spina bifida. FAS is a serious, lifelong condition that is characterized by facial abnormalities, growth retardation and central nervous system deficits including learning, behavioral and developmental disorders. FAS is caused by consuming alcohol during pregnancy, and the US Surgeon General has stated that there is no known safe level of alcohol consumption for pregnant women. The Center for Diease Control reports that from 1991 to 1995, rates of alcohol use during pregnancy increased, especially for frequent drinking, underscoring the need for renewed attention for prevention education.
It is estimated that 375,000 to 700,000 babies are born each year suffering form the effects of their mothers use of crack or cocaine during pregnancy.
These babies generally develop into children with a range of problems from developmental and intellectual delays to extreme aggressive behavior. Unlike Fetal Alcohol Syndrome with its permanent effects, "crack children" may grow out of some of their extreme behavioral tendencies when they are diagnosed and take part in an early intervention program.