real life

How you can help a friend after a miscarriage or still birth.

In this, Mamamia’s first annual Never Forgotten: Mamamia’s Pregnancy Loss Awareness Week, we have tried to offer hope to those who’ve lost a baby, from those going through it right now to those still grieving as time passes.

But what about those of us touched by a loss through a friend or relative, those who want to reach out and help but don’t know how?

Women who haven’t been through the loss of a child may not understand exactly how deep their friend mourns the baby they never got to know but they might want to help in the right way. In a way that matters.

This week, as part of Never Forgotten: Mamamia’s Pregnancy Loss Awareness Week we’re remembering the babies we’ve lost. Post continues below.

Heartfelt photographers:

Heartfelt is a volunteer organisation of professional photographers from all over Australia and New Zealand who help families with stillborn babies and terminally ill children. This dedicated group of photographers take photos for families of their babies so they have memories to look back upon.

As they are a charity organisation they rely on donations. You can help many families by donating to Heartfelt in the name of a friend who has come home from hospital without her baby.

Vist Heartfelt here.

Angel Gowns:

Angel Gowns transforms donated wedding dresses into gown for babies who didn’t make it. Image via Angel Gowns.

Every day in Australia, six families experience a still birth.

That is six families who not just have to grieve, but, when they should be thinking of taking their baby home, instead have to plan a funeral.

Angel Gowns aims to make that one step just a tiny bit easier by creating gowns for these angel babies.

Angel Gowns transforms donated wedding dresses into gown for babies who didn’t make it.

While Angel Gowns don’t need any more wedding dresses to make their precious garments right now, but you can donate via their web page.

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Vist Angel Gowns here.

Bears of Hope:

Bears of Hope Pregnancy & Infant Loss Support is another support service for families who experience the loss of their baby.

As well as providing information and support for families and helping to guide them through what will be the most difficult time of their lives they offer the ability to donate a support package for these families.

You can give a family a Bear of Hope. Image via Bears of Hope.

The organisation offers different packages for families experiencing different losses, and also allows you to donate to provide bears for hospitals so that a bereaved family can receive a Bear of Hope.

Visit Bears of Hope here.

Help your friend find support organisations:

*PANDA (Post and Antenatal Depression Association Inc.)

A non for profit organisation to assist women and families suffering post-natal depression, anxiety and suffering for the loss of a child.

Helpline: 1300 726 306 (Monday to Friday 10am – 5pm)

*Pillars of strength 

Offering supporting programs for Men to come together and have some ‘time out” after the loss of their baby.

*Sands Australia: Miscarriage, Stillbirth and Newborn Death.

Sands provides support, information and education to anyone affected by the death of a baby.

Live Chat available

Contact: 1300 072 637

*Stillbirth Foundation

Their mission is to significantly reduce the incidence of stillbirth through research and education.

Let them talk:

Let them acknowledge their babies, talk about their names, how they felt when they moved, the dreams they had for them. These beautiful angels need recognition and the dignity of being acknowledged.

Acknowledge their pain, their grief and tell them how sorry you are.

Volunteer to do the mundane tasks:

While your friend is dealing with their loss, or on the anniversary of a loss it’s hard for them to remember the world keeps spinning. But as a friend or relative perhaps you can be one of the ones to make it spin for her.

Meals, groceries, chores all need to be done still, other children need to be cared for.

Help them connect:

You can download Never Forgotten: Stories of love, loss and healing after miscarriage, stillbirth, and neonatal death for free here.

Join Mia, Rebecca and others who have lost a child in our private Facebook group.

If this has post raised any issues for you or if you would like to speak with someone, please contact the Sands Australia 24 hour support line on 1300 072 637.

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