Bereaved mums and dads in East Lincolnshire are inviting people who have been affected by the death of a baby, to come along to the re-launch of the local Sands (Stillbirth & neonatal death charity) support group.

The East Lincs group supports parents whose baby has died before, during or shortly after birth. The group was previously called Boston Sands but it has been renamed because the committee wanted to reach out to bereaved parents in the surrounding areas too.

The first meeting of the new look East Lincs group will take place on Thursday 23 March at Blackfriars Theatre, Spain Lane, Boston Lincs PE21 6HP from 7pm- 8.30pm.

After the re-launch, regular support meetings will take place on the fourth Thursday of the month from 7pm- 8.30pm at Blackfriars Theatre, and bereaved parents are more than welcome to drop in for a cup of tea and a chat.

The group will provide more support for bereaved parents than ever before. The committee hope to build on their continued relationship with Pilgrims Hospital in Boston, where they are looking to continue liaising with staff and support them by ensuring facilities and the care provided is the best it can be for all parents whose babies have died.

Sands groups are run on a voluntary basis by people who have themselves experienced the death of a baby. 

Dr Clea Harmer, Chief Executive of Sands, said: “We are pleased that the newly relaunched East Lincs Sands group will be reaching out to a wider area, and will be helping and supporting bereaved parents and their families at a devastating time for them. Many bereaved parents tell us that other parents who have experienced the death of a baby are able to offer real understanding and empathy. 

“I would urge anyone in the local area who is bereaved to come along to a group meeting in the future. We are dedicated to providing emotional support and information right from the early hours after a baby's death, through to the weeks, months and years ahead.”

The group is looking for befrienders to provide support to anyone affected by the death of a baby over the phone and in person at meetings.  The new befrienders must successfully complete Sands’ befriender training, and a minimum of a year must have passed since their baby died. The group are also looking for a treasurer and the role that would be especially suitable to anyone with financial acumen as well as an interest or empathy with Sands’ work.

For further information contact Rose Abrehart, East Network Coordinator at Sands on 07707 480020 or email: rose.abrehart@uk-sands.org Follow Sands on Twitter at @SandsUK  

Ends

Notes to editors

For further information, please contact Lee Armitt, Press and PR Officer in the Sands press office on 0203 598 1959/07587 925411 or media@uk-sands.org

About Sands

Sands is the leading stillbirth and neonatal death charity in the UK. They work nationally to reduce baby deaths through promoting better maternity care and funding research. They have a programme of training and a wide range of resources designed to support professionals to improve the bereavement care they provide following the death of a baby, and they provide a comprehensive bereavement support service both nationally through their helpline and locally through around 100 regional support groups based across the UK. Further information can be found at www.sands.org.uk