I promotori del progetto con la culla

The promoters of the project in one of the ‘Baby hatches’

In recent decades, more and more cases of newborns being abandoned or found in dustbins have been reported in newspapers and on the television. The many complex reasons underlying this phenomenon are related to the problematic social and economic backgrounds of the mothers, and to the fact that women are often unaware of their rights and of the health and welfare services available to them. Behind such extreme acts are desperate women who often believe they have no other alternative, and who feel they have no way of looking after their baby in the situation or society they are currently living in or in the social group they belong to. Some may be illegal immigrants, terrified non-European citizens or even just young women from good families who want to keep their pregnancy and their baby a secret for fear of the scandal it would cause. In order to prevent infant mortality and abandonment, under current legislation in Italy, women can give birth anonymously, give up their child, and receive help and assistance without being judged. But even so, abandonment continues to be a social scourge.

The ninna ho project was initiated by the Fondazione Francesca Rava and KPMG Italia. It was the first abandoned babies program in Italy to be officially recognized by the Italian Ministry of Health and sponsored by the Società Italiana di Neonatologia. It exists to help inform all mothers who feel they can’t look after their baby for whatever reason, whether psychological, social or economic of their rights in Italy.

  • to offer women in difficulty the possibility to exercise their right under Italian law to give birth anonymously in a hospital
  • to protect newborns at risk of abandonment or even infanticide.