Hand to Hold


Meet our new marketing director!
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Giving Back to Those Who Helped Me

I never thought I would be part of the NICU community, but I am here. I am stronger. And I am thankful for the relationships I have created from this journey.

I started my journey when my son was born at 34 weeks due to severe preeclampsia, but that was just the beginning. A scary delivery left my husband and me with a baby in a part of the hospital that we had only heard of on TV or in the movies. Our hospital had a Hand to Hold family support specialist who gave us our first gift as parents, the Milestone Bead Necklace, and invited us to a support group where we met new families who would become our forever friends.

After getting into the groove of our new normal, I knew I wanted to give back to Hand to Hold, to help support other families like they had helped mine, but I wasn’t sure how. I started with signing up as a volunteer to be alerted if there were any opportunities local to me. When I was ready, I signed up to be a peer mentor.

Then came Benson’s first birthday. As a newborn and new mom, I knew we didn’t need more “stuff,” and I still had the urge to give back. So we made his first birthday something to remember as a family. We donated his preemie clothes back to our NICU, we got hugs and pictures from our OBGYN team, and we set up an opportunity for our friends and family to give to Hand to Hold in lieu of gifts.

In March I joined the Hand to Hold team as their first-ever marketing director, a position that allows me to use my passion for marketing to ensure that NICU families like mine get the support they need. And as Benson's second birthday gets closer, we are again asking our friends and family to donate to Hand to Hold with a goal of $628 (his birthday). It’s exciting to get the donation notifications as keepsakes for his scrapbook and to know that he will be helping other families and babies like him.

As our families grow and their lives move further away from the NICU, we find ourselves looking for ways to give back. We want to serve other NICU families like ours, through volunteering our time as peer mentors or community volunteers, through fundraising or by sharing the work Hand to Hold does with our networks. However you choose to give back, we’re honored to have you on this journey with us.

Best wishes,

Krystle Gervais

Marketing Director


GLOW for a Cause!

Grab your friends and join us at Jazzercise Lakeline in Austin on Friday, July 19th for a night of dance and illumination at our Glow for a Cause benefiting Hand to Hold! This pulse-pounding workout will take you to another level when we add on the glow paint and turn off the lights!

A minimum $30 donation to Hand to Hold gets you into this special event which includes a team-taught class, glow paint and more. Doors open at 6:00 p.m. and the party kicks off at 6:30 p.m.

Sign up today!


NICU Dad Discussions: Have You Listened Yet?

We're giving you real discussions with real NICU dads. Listen to NICU Dad Discussions today!


Thank you for raising money on behalf of NICU grads!

We would like to thank everyone for sharing and participating in our NICU Graduate campaign. With your help, we were able to raise more than $7,000 for families after they leave the NICU! A big thank you to our exclusive sponsor, VIVA Pediatrics!

There's still time to donate!

  • $25 - Provides guided support through online support communities.
  • $50 - Provides food and craft supplies for one in-hospital support group.
  • $100 - Allows Hand to Hold staff to facilitate a month's worth of Beyond the NICU support groups.

It's a Hand to Hold Family Reunion!

There's nothing like a family reunion to bring people together. Stay tuned for a fun event coming soon for our Austin families! Date and location TBD.


From the Blog

The Day We Truly Graduated from the NICU by Kelli Kelley. When Kelli's son Jackson embraced the neonatologist that saved his life on his most difficult day in the NICU, she felt like the circle had been completed.

10 Things New NICU Dads Need to Know by Alex Zavala. Alex's words of wisdom to new NICU dads kicked off a four-part series on stories and experiences by NICU dads.

Announcing NICU Dad Discussions: A Podcast for NICU Dads, by NICU Dads. Did you see our exciting announcement? Now there's a podcast just for NICU dads!

A Therapist's Experience with PPD & PSD After the NICU by Lisa Osborne. Even though she is a licensed professional counselor specializing in treating others struggling with depression, anxiety and PTSD, Lisa had trouble recognizing she was struggling too.



About Hand to Hold

Hand to Hold helps families before, during, and after NICU stays and infant loss by providing powerful resources for the whole family, and most importantly, one-on-one mentoring from someone who has been there. Read more.



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