BOISE - The holiday season is upon us, and that means the Festival of Trees is here. The Saint Alphonsus Foundation has held the event for the past 33 years.
The Festival of Trees has raised more than $9 million to improve health care in our community. This year, money raised will be going to the Saint Alphonsus Neonatal Intensive Care Unit.
"She was 11 inches long," said Jessica Walston, when talking about her daughter.
Walston is a mother of three. Her youngest, Brynnleigh, was born three months early. She barely weighed a pound when she was born last November.
"She could fit in the palm of my hand," said Walston.
A lot has changed in a year. Brynnleigh is now 15 months old and 22 pounds.
"She's still continuing to do excellent," said Walston.
Walston credits so much of her daughter's success to those who cared for her in the Saint Alphonsus NICU.
"You have this bad, horrific thing happen to you, but the people in there make it so great," said Walston. "They just, they grow your baby. They take care of your heart while you can't be there."
Walston is passionate about the work being done at the NICU, and that's why she is so excited the money raised from this year's Festival of Trees will help with improvements.
Funds will enable the expansion of the family sleeping rooms, and the addition of more swaddlers, recliners and cameras.
The money will also allow for sound-deadening flooring and noise monitors.
"People think that sounds really stupid," said Walston. "They need that because if you talk like we're talking now that's stimulating for them and can cause major damage to them."
Walston believes no place needs the money more and she hopes you'll help support the cause.
"It can't be better spent there on these small tiny humans that they're growing," said Walston.
If you want to help improve the NICU at Saint Alphonsus, the Festival of Trees runs through Sunday, November 27, at the Boise Centre. The fashion show is on the 28.
For more information on the event click here.
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