For the very first time, Buckinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust has taken part in the global wave of light campaign as part of Baby Loss Awareness Week which takes place from the 9th to 15th October each year.
At 3pm on Sunday 15th October 2017 the Trust hosted a special memorial service at Union Baptist Church in High Wycombe, where a candle was lit for each baby lost. In addition the Trust also joined forces with Waddesdon Manor to raise awareness of the issues surrounding pregnancy and baby loss in the UK, with the manor lighting up its main façade at 7.00pm on Sunday 15th October 2017 (pictured above).
The Trust has a dedicated bereavement support midwife and nurse who are specially trained to make sure families receive the right care and support after the loss of a baby. Part of this is ensuring that families are in a warm and caring environment which is why the Trust has opened two new rooms at Stoke Mandeville Hospital, specially designed to support families through the initial stages of the loss of their baby.
The Willow Room in the maternity unit at Stoke Mandeville Hospital was opened with the help of stillbirth and neonatal death charity Sands, while the Snowdrop Room on the surgical floor was created in partnership with the Trust’s charitable fund and charity in aid of bereaved parents 4Louis.
Bereavement support midwife Jennifer Higgs says: ‘We want to make sure that we can do everything we can to support families during what could be one of the most difficult times of their lives and hope that our new Willow and Snowdrop rooms will provide them with a more comfortable and less clinical environment.
To see Waddesdon Manor lit up as part of the wave of light will also be a beautiful way to help local families commemorate their babies’ lives. We want them to know that we are here to help them every step of the way in ensuring they receive the right support.‘
Local SANDS representative Sam Phillips says: ‘One of our main aims is to ensure that our local hospitals are properly equipped to deal with those affected by a baby loss and the new Willow Room at Stoke Mandeville is a great example of what can be achieved.‘
Robert McGurrell of 4Louis says: ‘For us it’s about supporting all families – the loss of a child is difficult regardless of where you are. So we want to do anything we can to support hard working health professionals and help them offer the best care possible to bereaved families.‘