From 9 to 16 October at Surrey and Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust (SASH) we are joining those across the country to mark Baby Loss Awareness Week. The week is an opportunity for everyone in the baby loss community and beyond to come together to remember and commemorate our much-loved and missed babies.

The week also provides an opportunity to raise awareness of the impact of pregnancy and baby loss; the importance that bereavement support plays in the ongoing bereavement journey; and of the vital work that is needed to improve pregnancy outcomes and to save babies’ lives. 

At East Surrey Hospital we have a dedicated bereavement midwife, Tracy Skinner, who supports parents during this difficult time. Last year, whilst under the care of our midwifery team, Rebecca and her husband Dean suffered the devastating loss of their first baby Charlotte on 16 March 2021 which led to Tracy supporting them. During this period Rebecca and Dean turned to Sands, the leading stillbirth and neonatal death charity in the UK, for support following the loss of Charlotte and it wasn’t long before the couple started their own fundraising campaign for the charity.

Back in July last year Rebecca announced that she and Dean were expecting a baby, and Tracy’s support continued because of the added anxiety of parents who have suffered a loss. Beautiful Holly was born safe and well in February 2022.

At the end of August, Rebecca and Holly came to visit Tracy with 10 packs of photograph paper and ink sets which are vital tools of memory making for parents. They also gave SASH a brand-new baby bean bag, also essential for taking the photographs of their babies.

Tracy said: “It never fails to amaze me the strength of couples who have experienced the loss of a baby either during pregnancy or shortly after birth. That they think of other parents whilst they are living with the loss of their own baby.

“Thank you Rebecca and Dean, your friends and your families who have supported you both through such a traumatic event and for the difference your selfless actions will mean for other bereaved parents.”

On Saturday 15 October at 11am in the lecture theatre opposite the atrium in East Surrey Hospital, the chaplaincy team will be leading a baby memorial service. They would like to invite individuals who work with those who have experienced the loss of their babies, if you have lost a baby yourself or have been affected by the loss of a baby in any way, to join them to remember these precious lives. There will be readings and poems, music, gifts of remembrance and candles to light. All are welcome.

  • Surrey and Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust maternity unit was rated Outstanding.
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