Whether you’re currently in the NICU, ready to be discharged, or you’ve been out of the unit for months (or years!), showing appreciation for the NICU nurses who cared for your baby never goes out of style. September 15 is NICU Nurse Appreciation Day, but the gift ideas below can be used year round to thank your nurses and show them how much they mean to you.
Treats and drinks
Showing up with a plate of cookies or a fruit basket is a great way to say thank you to your nurse or the entire team. Nurses work long hours, so it’s nice having something to snack on when they take their short breaks. Whether you bake homemade treats or pick up something from your local grocery store, your NICU team is sure to appreciate the thoughtful gesture. If you’ve gotten to know your nurse well enough to know her favorite coffee or treat, even better!
Dinner’s on us
On the topic of food, if it’s in your budget, consider calling out for pizzas or sandwiches for the NICU on staff one evening, or bring your primary nurse a meal or gift card from her favorite restaurant.
Micro preemie mom Jennifer gave each of her primary nurses an anchor necklace, to represent that they were the anchors in her storm. Consider finding a special quote, book, or printable that is meaningful to you. Other parents have given pieces of meaningful jewelry, personalized frames, or even hand-painted trinkets.
The act of handwriting notes is a lost art, but there are few things your nurse will appreciate more than a thoughtful note during your NICU stay, telling how meaningful their work is to you.
There are lots of cute and stylish ways for nurses to personalize their gear. Lanyards, badge clips, and pins let nurses show their personality while working tirelessly to care for little babies. A quick search online will bring up tons of fun options.
Award nominations and recognition
One of the best things you can do to thank your nurse is to help others recognize the hard work they’re doing. Find out if there are any healthcare awards in your area, and nominate your nurse in the appropriate categories. At the very least, give them recognition they deserve by giving feedback to their superiors. So often we think of gifts as being tangible things, but positive feedback is priceless (especially when it goes into their employment file or results in an award!).
Many nurses say the best gift they can receive is to stay in touch. Keep your nurses updated with your baby’s progress after leaving the NICU. They love hearing about all the things their former charges are accomplishing.
Visit our NICU Nurse Appreciation Day Pinterest board for more ideas! No matter what you do, if you do it from the heart, your efforts will mean the world to the NICU nurses in your life.