Shantell L. Roberts
Touching Young Lives, Incorporated
After the loss of her daughter, Shantell Roberts committed her life to leading an organization that focuses on the health and well-being of infants and children.
Roberts’ daughter, Tylour, died at age 1 of MRSA pneumonia. Roberts founded Touching Young Lives Incorporated to educate parents about the best care for their children and to provide resources.
In April 2017, she launched the Portable Alternative Crib initiative in Baltimore. The Portable Alternative Crib is a simple cardboard box that is a certified, safe sleeping space for infants and contains a variety of maternal self-care and infant care items such as diapers, wipes, onesies, infant hygiene products, preventative infant care literature and handmade crochet blankets to be used for swaddling.
More than 3,000 families have been provided with Portable Alternative Cribs.
She received the very first $25,000 prize from the Johns Hopkins University Social Innovation Lab and traveled to Glasgow, Scotland in June to not only attend the International Conference on Stillbirth, SIDS and Baby Survival but to share the first year data on her work in Baltimore.
“As a bereaved mother, this work reminds me that my daughter’s death was not in vain and that her legacy lives,” Roberts said.
Roberts serves on the advisory board of the University of Maryland Department of Pediatrics Center for Infant and Child Loss. She is a dedicated support volunteer for newly bereaved mothers and an active board member. Most recently, she joined the United Way of Central Maryland’s Emerging Leaders United Executive Council, participating in various service projects throughout Baltimore.