You are here
Sextuplets need home (with CNC3 video)
Kieron Cummings nearly fell to the ground in shock when he first heard he would become the father of six but today the 29-year-old Arima resident is at the height of excitement when he thinks about his “six blessings.” However, now that he and an even prouder mother, Petra Lee Foon, a 28-year-old teacher, are parents, they need their own home to ensure their children are properly taken care of, since they both still live at their parents’ homes.
Cummings, the first-time father of the country’s first sextuplets, revealed his feelings at a press conference at the Eric Williams Medical Sciences Complex, Mt Hope, yesterday. Addressing the newborn babies and mother’s health first, Cummings said: “The children are okay, their mom is okay. She is in recovery and everything is all right.” He added jokingly: “I know you all wanted to know who the father was. That’s me.”
Cummings said he was amazed when he was told his girlfriend was pregnant with six children. “I nearly fell to the ground. But it’s all good. I feel very blessed.” Cummings said the couple had come up with names for some of the babies but did not reveal them. He said he was very nervous during the delivery. “They had me and the family in a special area outside theatre,” he said.
Cummings, who works in the banking sector, said while the babies were doing well, he had not held them yet. “Five of them are off the ventilator, only one of them is still on. But they are all doing well,” he said, adding that doctors have not said when Lee Foon or their six babies would be allowed to go home. The couple live separately, however, Cummings lives with his parents in Arima and Lee Foon with her parents in Chaguanas.
Cummings said they had applied for housing from the Government and have been waiting on a response for two years. He said the family was still making preparations to receive the babies at home. Asked to comment on a promise from Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar that the Government would be co-parents to the babies, Cummings said any additional support would be welcome.
The babies, three boys and three girls, who were delivered by caesarean section on Monday, made history as the first sextuplets to be born in the Caribbean. Cummings said there was a history of multiple births in Lee Foon’s family. Former Gender Affairs Minister and social activist Verna St Rose-Greaves, who was also at yesterday’s press conference, said Lee Foon had been seeking help with her reproductive healthcare.
St Rose-Greaves described herself as a friend of the Cummings family and said the birth of the babies had given the nation an opportunity to look at a lot of things. “She (Lee Foon) now has to take care of six children but both sides of the family are very supportive,” St Rose Greaves said. She said there should now be a discussion about extra leave or special leave for both parents.
“In this situation a lot of assistance will be needed and the family is prepared to help take care of the children but in the best interest of the children there are a lot of things that have to be considered,” she said. “Long-term healthcare, a home that can accommodate six children and caregivers, transport and all the things that children need have to be considered. The family would welcome whatever support they can get,” she added.
She called for a bank account to be opened so that people who wished to support the young couple could make financial contributions. So far, a carpenter has called and volunteered to make a chest of drawers for the babies, she said. Cummings told reporters he looked forward to the activities he would share with his children and added that Lee Foon “would be in her glee when it came to shopping for them.”
The new father said while he was thrilled with the birth of babies, he was not yet ready to discuss future offsprings.
User comments posted on this website are the sole views and opinions of the comment writer and are not representative of Guardian Media Limited or its staff. Guardian Media Limited accepts no liability and will not be held accountable for user comments.
Please help us keep out site clean from inappropriate comments by using the flag option.
Guardian Media Limited reserves the right to remove, to edit or to censor any comments. Any content which is considered unsuitable, unlawful or offensive, includes personal details, advertises or promotes products, services or websites or repeats previous comments will be removed.