Preterm Birth / Stillbirth Guilds

A guild is a team of friends, families, co-workers and community members contributing time, resources and expertise to GAPPS. As part of Seattle Children’s Guild Association, you will be part of the largest all-volunteer network in the United States. The Guild Association is home to more than 500 groups serving as advocates to improve children’s health. GAPPS was founded as a research initiative of Seattle Children’s. We are now an independent non-profit organization and we continue to partner with the guilds to raise awareness and catalyze fundraising for events. Learn more about the Seattle Children’s Guild Association.

Stillborn Still Loved Guild

Four parents, Ashley, Abbie, Keli and Ralph, created the Stillborn Still Loved Guild after they experienced the deaths of their children, Walker, Isaiah, Adam and Harry. The guild is a place for people with similar experiences to come together and create change through sponsoring events, raising money, and raising awareness of stillbirth

The Stillborn Still Loved Guild supports GAPPS through sponsoring fundraisers and events to raise awareness, fund research, and provide a community for families of stillborn babies. It is their goal that this guild can be a helpful way for families to work together out of love for their children. The guild is made up of parents, families, medical professionals, and friends. They hope the guild will have a profoundly positive impact on society, the medical field, research efforts, and families of stillborn babies, so that silence no longer surrounds the tragedy of stillbirth

Find out more about the Stillborn Still Loved guild at or on Facebook.

Tiny Footprints Guild

Two inspiring women with difficult birth stories of their own founded the Tiny Footprints Guild in 2009 to benefit GAPPS. They invite you to join in the effort to end preterm birth and stillbirth. With your help, we can positively impact millions of lives.

GAPPS is an extraordinary answer to these global health crises.”

- Erica Gower, co-Founder, Tiny Footprints Guild

The Tiny Footprints Guild is dedicated to raising awareness of prematurity and stillbirth and to raising funds that support GAPPS. Through this work, they honor all those children born with “tiny footprints.” Connect with Tiny Footprints on Facebook to learn about their current activities. Guild founders Gina Celeste Dunn and Erica Gower share their stories:

Gina Celeste Dunn's Story

Gina Celeste Dunn's first pregnancy, went smoothly; she had no reason to expect anything different with her second. However, at 26 weeks, her water broke and she was admitted to the hospital. Even with world-class care, Gina’s preterm labor could not be stopped and she delivered Ryan two weeks later.

After her son spent two weeks in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU), Gina and her husband received shocking news: Ryan had necrotizing enterocolitis, a gastrointestinal disease that primarily affects premature infants. He died four weeks later. Since that time, Gina has wrestled with a fundamental question: Why did this happen?

"I underwent all kinds of tests after Ryan was born, but no one could find a cause for my premature labor," Gina says.

"It was devastating to lose my baby to prematurity and have no idea why."

"This research is long overdue," she says. "If GAPPS’ scientists can prevent this tragedy from happening to others, I’ll have peace of mind."

Erica Gower’s Story

Erica Gower’s first pregnancy was perfectly normal — she delivered a healthy, full-term baby boy. When she became pregnant two years later, Erica and her husband Steve expected another “seamless” pregnancy. But a complication arose at 31 weeks, and Erica delivered daughter Katie via emergency Caesarean section. Erica lost so much blood during delivery that she nearly died.

Erica recovered quickly, but her baby Katie was hospitalized for six weeks while her respiratory and immune systems matured. A few days after the Gowers brought Katie home, their baby contracted viral meningitis. “We didn’t know if she would make it,” Erica recalls. “That’s how it was during the first year of Katie’s life — we lived moment to moment, never knowing what would happen next.”

Today, against the odds, Katie is a healthy, active child. “We are lucky that Katie doesn’t have any health issues related to prematurity,” says Erica.

"We know many families who lost their babies to prematurity or who face a lifetime of medical care for their kids. It’s a tremendous burden, and we don’t even know why it happens. GAPPS is an extraordinary answer to this global health crisis."

Born Too Soon: The Story of Premature Birth

Click here to learn more about joining or starting a guild.