Charity art auction raises money for Neonatal Trust
A fundraising project will see a group of Nelson artists donate work to the Neonatal Trust this month in an auction set to raise awareness around premature births.
Aptly titled 'Tiny Art', the fundraiser is already underway, with artwork already listed on Trade Me.
The pieces are all original Kiwi designs, with the auction set to close on November 19 - World Prematurity Day.
The Neonatal Trust is a charitable organisation focussed on providing care for sick and premature babies across New Zealand. According to the organisation, a premature baby is born in New Zealand every 90 minutes which equates to more than 10 percent of all babies born each year.
Among the artists donating work is Ruth O'Connell. Now 37 weeks pregnant, she says her desire to be involved with the project spawns from her own personal pregnancy journey.
"It’s easy to become complacent about being pregnant and forget we are an integral part of this natural wonder, the ultimate celebration of life, and just how blessed we are to have made it this far. With each stroke of the brush and kick of her boot I am reminded just how much we have grown already and will continue to grow together - her, myself and her dad."
Ms O'Connell isn't the only artist with a personal connection to the cause either.
Marie Simberg-Hoglund is not only a sculptor, but a mother who has experienced a premature birth and the complications that come with it.
"Our family is delighted to involved with the Tiny Art awareness and fundraising campaign," she says. "We are a neonatal family ourselves with our youngest son born 9 weeks premature. He is now a very healthy 32-year-old but we know exactly how it feels to have a premature baby."
Ninety percent of the Tiny Art proceeds will go into providing enhanced services for families and babies affected by premature births.
The other 10 percent will go to the Life Flight Trust, to help fund emergency helicopter services.