If You Dream It, Create It

This is the true story of two nurses who travelled to Pinetown, South Africa on April 24th, 2019. Two entrepreneurs who saw a need and began working tirelessly to apply their collective expertise to meet it. They are starting from scratch to create the Code Life Global Health Program; the first initiative is volunteering at Baby Hope House in South Africa.

Code Life was founded in Montreal, Canada by Aline C., Registered Nurse (RN) in October of 2018. Aline has worked in both the Adult Trauma Centre and Neonatal Intensive Care Unit and is certified by the Neonatal Resuscitation Program (NRP). After recognizing a desire to provide even more to her community, Aline pursued an Instructor Certification from the Heart and Stroke Foundation in September of 2018, and then established Code Life the following month. The name Code Life originated from a family brainstorming session and represents the tenacity of hope in the face of an emergency situation, emphasizing the idea that coding does not always have to result in a tragedy when the proper resources are in effect.
One of Code Life’s local-level objectives is to provide accessible, life-saving first responder skills and certifications to community members and associations through the Heart and Stroke Foundation. They offer courses including: CPR/Basic Life Support (BLS), Automated External Defibrillator (AED), Anaphylaxis, and First Aid Certifications, for infant, child, and adult care. Aline is also completing both the Emergency Nursing Pediatric Course (ENPC) and the Trauma Nursing Core Course (TNCC) -- both of which are five-year international certifications.

This year, Code Life welcomed Kim, a Toronto-based RN and certified Doula (birth companion/birthing and post birthing coach). Kim works in Acute Care and General Medicine at the Trauma Center of St. Michael’s Hospital in Toronto. Together, Aline and Kim created Code Life Global Health and the Code Life Global Health Project. Both nurses are passionate about increasing access to general healthcare and first response education in all areas of the world, but especially where they believe there is the greatest need. One of their broader goals is to work directly with individuals and groups, to better equip them with the skills necessary to feel autonomous in emergency situations. One way they do this is by providing an infant-specific training program, curating by Code Life and designed for families with newborn babies.

Aline first visited Baby Hope House in April of 2018 and was deeply moved by the notable social, physical, and emotional improvements displayed by the once-abandoned infants and toddlers. Baby Hope House is located in Pinetown, a town outside of Durban, the third largest city in South Africa. Baby Hope House strives to ensure that the children and their adoptive families have a strong support system once in their forever homes. Aline also saw how the people who are devoting their lives to Baby Hope House truly understand the importance of warmth, love, and affection – values consistently displayed when they are treating the children at the nursery, and continued well into the adoption process.

Right now, Baby Hope House is in need of immediate help. They recently experienced a horrible loss when one of the two owners suddenly passed away, subsequently leaving the one person remaining to run the entire house. Code Life Global Health had already decided to volunteer at Baby Hope House as their first global outreach project, but their plans were suddenly expedited in consideration of this unforeseen tragedy.

Code Life Global Health is providing volunteer assistance at Baby Hope House. In addition to helping with the children’s daily care, they will be implementing the Code Life Global Health Project by providing their infant-specific first responder training program (CPR, Choking, Anaphylaxis, and First Aid) at no cost to Baby Hope House. The training is an updated version of the Code Life training and has been adapted to meet the needs of this specific initiative. Its purpose is to equip all staff members and future families with the necessary skills to properly care for their newly-adopted baby, ultimately ensuring the project’s self-sustainability.

On April 24th, Aline and Kim travelled from North America to South Africa, CPR dummies in-tow. The supplies they donate will also be purchased in South Africa, in an effort to further support of the local economy. The supplies include the standard necessities (diapers, clothing, baby formula, etc.) and other items Aline and Kim determined were required upon arrival at Baby Hope House.

Code Life Global Health has been posting details of the journey so far on their Instagram (@codelifevie) and Facebook (Code Life) page. They also created a GoFundMe page for this initiative and the details can be found on their Instagram profile. The money already raised has gone towards the cost of supplies donated to Baby Hope House, and your donation will hopefully allow for Aline and Kim to expand and offer their training program to neighboring Baby Homes.

Aline once said, “if you dream it, create it.” Every day since Code Life’s inception in 2018 has been one more step towards creating and maintaining a reality centered around helping others through warmth, love, and affection.