Brigid’s Path cares for newborns exposed to addictive substances

Brigid's Path is the first newborn recovery center in Ohio. CONTRIBUTED
Brigid's Path is the first newborn recovery center in Ohio. CONTRIBUTED

As a foster mom caring for babies born exposed to addictive substances, Jill Kingston believed there had to be a better way to care for these children and their parents.

“Our first little baby was just three and a half pounds. I quickly realized he was going to need special, different care than what I had learned for my other children,” says Kingston. “I saw how his parents were treated and how they were struggling. It was eight years ago, and I didn’t realize at the time that Ohio was entering a new phase of drug use. But I knew we could care better for families.”

After several years of researching, connecting, building and praying, Brigid’s Path opened to families in 2017. Since then, more than 120 families have found “grace for the past, support for the present, and hope for the future” because of Brigid’s Path.

ExploreFairy houses found along Aullwood trail

“We became the first newborn recovery center in Ohio and only the second place in the country to welcome families to a home-like environment where they could find healing,” says Kingston. “We are the only place in southwest Ohio where babies can get 24/7, one-on-one care from doctors and nurses who are specially trained to care for babies born exposed to addictive substances. And, we have a team of family advocates who help families get connected to the resources they need to move forward.”

The work of caring for and supporting families facing substance use continued in the midst of the pandemic. According to its recently published annual report, Brigid’s Path continued to help its families find success in 2020:

  • Brigid’s Path cared for 47 babies in 2020 — an 18 percent increase from 2019
  • 83 percent of babies at Brigid’s Path would have been placed directly into foster case without Brigid’s Path
  • 96 percent of moms were very satisfied with their experience at Brigid’s Path
  • 68 percent of babies went home with a parent, family members or Safe Family after discharge
  • 152 lives of babies and kin impacted in 2020 — an 18 percent increase from 2019

“When we articulated our Brigid’s Path values in 2019, it felt right to state, ‘We are bold.’ After all, there’s never been a singular, all-knowing playbook for us to follow,” says Kingston. “Creating a new way to care for substance-exposed babies and their families takes courage. A willingness to adapt. To try new things. And, in the midst of a global pandemic, that’s exactly what we did. We still welcomed families facing the crisis of substance use, but we also wore masks, sanitized even more than normal, and kept going. We kept loving families and championing them forward. And we’ll keep doing it because our community needs us.”

Brigid's Path is the first newborn recovery center in Ohio. CONTRIBUTED
Brigid's Path is the first newborn recovery center in Ohio. CONTRIBUTED

What you can donate

In addition to financial support, Brigid’s Path can use:

  • Dreft Stage 1 laundry detergent
  • Trash bags
  • Diapers (sizes 3 and 4)
  • Diaper pail liner refills
  • Bounty paper towels
  • Single-serve, non-perishable foods for family center (granola bars, soups, single-serve meals, etc.)
  • White copy paper

Donations may be dropped off any time at the front door (3601 S. Dixie Drive, Moraine, OH 45439). Additional items can be found on a wish list at brigidspath.org/donate.

If you know a mom who is pregnant or newly postpartum and struggling with substance use, Brigid’s Path can help.

ExploreJUST IN: Incubus heading to Rose Music Center for the first time

Anyone can refer a family to Brigid’s Path by calling (937) 350-1785 or going online at brigidspath.org/referrals.

Other ways you can help

Want to host a fundraiser? Make meals for families? Do a day of service? Ideas to support Brigid’s Path can be found at brigidspath.org/getinvolved.

After canceling its four fundraising events last year, Brigid’s Path will hold an inaugural golf outing with Homefull on July 19 at Sycamore Creek Country Club. A popular event, SKETCH, is scheduled for Oct. 15 at the Top of the Market. More details and events can be found online at brigidspath.org/events.

Thanks, readers!

“Thank you for the MVHO spotlight on June 24,” writes Rebecca DeLong, fund development and communications manager for Miami Valley Housing Opportunities. “A donor today said she always reads your column to see who she can help. She does this to honor her mother, who passed away in 2017. I found the donor heartwarming, and she made my day. There are some very generous, kind individuals in our community who do make a difference. Thank you!”

MAKE A DIFFERENCE

Meredith Moss writes about Dayton-area nonprofit organizations and their specific needs. If your group has a wish list it would like to share with our readers, contact Meredith: meredith.moss@coxinc.com.

Please include a daytime phone number and a photo that reflects your group’s mission.