Safe Haven Baby Boxes expands to 11th Indiana town

The Woodburn-based company has expanded to three states in three years and is working to add more baby boxes in the future

Posted: Aug 9, 2019 4:10 PM

SYRACUSE, Ind. (WFFT) - Indiana had one of the highest infant mortality rates in the country in 2017. One of those contributors?Abandoned infants.

Woodburn-based Safe Haven Baby Boxes is trying to combat that.

Monica Kelsey, Founder & CEO of Safe Haven Baby Boxes said, "We are helping curb this infant mortality in a way that I don't think anybody truly looked at."

The Center for Disease Control ranked Indiana 7th in the country in infant mortality rates while Ohio ranked 8th.

Safe Haven Baby Boxes is trying to get into as many communities as they can, trying to save as many children as they can.

"We actually helped a woman in January {2019} surrender in Kosciusko County. A few weeks later we had a baby in Whitley County that we helped surrender. Then, I think it was 5 days later in Allen County."

The newest box was unveiled today in Kosciusko County at the Turkey Creek Township fire station number 2 in Syracuse.

They've been working to get the box in place for almost a year now. Fire Chief Mickey Scott says the station was chosen over the one in town because it's more secluded.

Scott said, "We wanted to give them a safe alternative if they don't feel comfortable using the Safe Haven law and turning them over to a firefighter, a police officer, or hospital. They want to do it anonymously, this is the way to do it. So, we want to provide this opportunity for them."

"These women are asking for anonymity, we're giving them anonymity and they're utilizing it," Kelsey said.

Even though Indiana is high on the infant mortality list, Kelsey believes the state is top in doing something about it.

She explained "We look at success by how many babies are not found in dumpsters, not found in trash cans and in Indiana, we have found zero in three years. That's where Indiana is leading the way, on no dead babies in our state."

If you need more information regarding Safe Haven Baby Boxes and the programs they provide, click here.

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