Babies born in Oxfordshire are all set to receive the best possible start to life with an early introduction to their local football club.
Oxford United in the Community and Oxford United have partnered with Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust to welcome babies born in Oxfordshire with a club branded bib.
On average 20 babies are born in Oxfordshire daily in multiple hospitals or at home – and each one will be offered a United bib, thanks to the partnership.
Oxford United Chairman, Sumrith 'Tiger' Thanakarnjanasuth came up with the initial idea and told us:
“I was amazed how many babies are born in Oxford every year and we want as many of them as possible to grow up and support their local team. We already have an outstanding Community programme and this is a really nice way for us to offer a gift, celebrate the baby’s safe arrival and work with the wonderful hospitals that help all across Oxfordshire.”
Buzz Jones was the first baby to receive his Oxford United baby bib last week at the John Radcliffe Hospital.
Proud mum Erin Heffernan, of Berinsfield, Oxfordshire, said: “It’s lovely that the club’s charity is doing this for the community.
“My grandad is a massive Oxford United fan and he will be over the moon when I tell him about this. We certainly won’t forget this day and it adds to a special time for our family.”
Chris Lowes, Head of Oxford United in the Community, visited the John Radcliffe Hospital last week to present the bibs.
He said: “This is a great way for us to get into the heart of our community and welcome people to Oxfordshire. The midwifery team at Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust do a fantastic job and this is a nice way to give something back.”
Jane Upham, Clinical Midwifery Manager at Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust said: “It’s nice to be able to give something back to our families and we’re grateful to Oxford United in the Community and Oxford United.
“United is very community spirited and so are we so it’s a good partnership. A lot of our staff are fans, and everyone is delighted with this lovely gesture.
“We will offer the bibs to the families, by leaving them in the cots and let them decide whether to accept the gesture. It’s a nice way to welcome people to Oxfordshire.
“We used to be able to see the Manor Ground from the maternity ward window here, so there’s heritage and an extra connection for us with the club.”