Elizabeth Grace Sleep Sack Program

In 2002, Jenny and Craig Atzen found themselves living a parent's worst nightmare. Their daughter, Elizabeth Grace Atzen, died of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) at four months old.

Jenny, a Registered Nurse and Certified Nurse Midwife at Genesis, knew she had "done everything right," and couldn't understand why this happened. Dedicated to honoring Elizabeth's short life, Jenny and Craig launched the Elizabeth Grace Sleep Sack Program at Genesis BirthCenter.

In early 2014, Genesis began using sleep sacks instead of blankets. One of the largest risk factors for SIDS is a baby sleeping in an unsafe sleep environment. Part of this includes using blankets and other extra bedding in the crib. By introducing the use of sleep sacks to parents while in the hospital, the team at Genesis BirthCenter has an opportunity to talk to parents about safe sleep and reducing the risk of SIDS.

Through this project, each of the 2,300 babies born annually at Genesis Medical Center will be sent home with a Halo® Infant SleepSack.


Each sleep sack costs $9. Your gift supports the continuation of this important program and provides a sleep sack for new babies born at Genesis BirthCenter.


About Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS)

Each year, approximately 2,400 children in the United States die as a result of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS). Sudden Infant Death Syndrome is the sudden and unexplained death of an apparently healthy infant younger than one year of age. An unexplained infant death is labeled Sudden Infant Death Syndrome after a thorough case investigation, including the performance of an autopsy, death scene investigation, and review of the medical history.

SIDS cannot be predicted, nor is it entirely preventable at this time. However, research demonstrates that the risks can be reduced. According to the Centers for Disease Control, the most important thing a caregiver can do to reduce the risk of SIDS is to always place your baby to sleep on his or her back rather, than on the stomach or side, in a crib or bassinet with no loose blankets.

How you can help reduce the risk of SIDS
  1. Always place your baby on his or her back for sleeping, NOT their stomach.
  2. Make sure the baby sleeps on a firm mattress, in a safety-approved crib.
  3. Keep soft objects, loose bedding, or any objects that could increase the risk of entrapment, suffocation, or strangulation out of the crib.
  4. Make sure the baby’s head and face stay uncovered during sleep.
  5. Ensure that your baby does not become overheated.
  6. Offer a pacifier at nap time and bed time.
  7. Do not allow smoking around your baby.
  8. Make a gift to the Elizabeth Grace Sleep Sack Project to ensure more babies born at Genesis BirthCenter are sent home with a sleep sack.

Source: Centers for Disease Control - www.cdc.gov/sids

Make a Gift

Support the Elizabeth Grace Sleep Sack Program by setting up a monthly gift today.

Donate Here

Our Locations

Office Hours:

Monday through Friday
8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.

  • Facebook
  • YouTube
Connect