Did you know that 6,000 babies born in the UK are premature? Premature babies have less time to develop in the womb, which means that they often face more challenges and difficulties in their first few months of life than babies born at full-term. Thanks to modern medicine however, many babies who are born before 37 weeks are able to grow, thrive and live healthy lives. But the beginning of a premature baby's life can be a fight and a real rollercoaster of emotions for parents.
Canadian photographer Red Méthot wanted to capture the resilience of these special babies with a series of photos featuring children who were born prematurely holding photos of themselves as tiny newborns. He also wanted to send a message of hope to parents of premature babies – it's a subject matter that is close to his heart, as Red himself has two children who were born prematurely.
In the moving images, children of all ages are seen holding black and white framed photos of themselves as premature newborns.
Finding clothes for premature babies can be a challenge. That's why Asda has launched a new premature babies clothing range that's available in stores and online now. Sales from the range will be donated to Tommy's, a charity that funds research into pregnancy problems and provides pregnancy health information to parents.
Lexiani, born at 25 weeks
The powerful photo series was published on Facebook and is called “Les Prémas” which roughly translates to “The Preemies.” On his Facebook page Methot writes, “This album shows portraits of people born prematurely that have sometimes had a difficult journey at the beginning of life. You can see what they have become.”
Noah and Nathan, born at 32 weeks
Looking at the images, it's clear to see how far these prematurely born children have come since their time in intensive care. Many of the framed photographs show premature babies surrounded by wires and hooked up to machines. But the colourful, smiling photos of the children today are a testament to the strength of these special babies.
Émile, born at 26 weeks
You can see all of the inspiring images from 'The Premmies' series here.
To find out more about prematurity, visit Tommy's website.