News & events
West London Sands seeks volunteer befrienders:
Sands is seeking volunteer Befrienders in the West London area. 17 babies are stillborn or die shortly after birth every day in the UK and the organisation is keen to improve its help for bereaved parents. Read more here...
Memorial service for the loss of a child - 28th April
The Liberal Jewish Synagogue and West London Synagogue invite members and guests affected by the loss of a child to our shared biennial service
at 15:00 on Sunday 28th April at West London Synagogue, 33 Seymour Place, London W1
The service will include prayers and music and the lighting of candles and a time for silence.
For more information email firstname.lastname@example.org
Memorial service for the loss of a child - 15th May 2013
Remembering babies and children from St Mary's and Queen Charlotte's Hospitals at St James Church, Sussex Gardens, Paddington, London w2 3UD. For more information please see the flyer (PDF)
Remembering Our Babies Service - Queen Charlotte’s and St Mary’s Neonatal Units - 18th May 2013
The neonatal staff warmly invite you and your family to our annual service to remember and give thanks for our babies.
The service will take place on:
Saturday 18th May 2013 at 11.30 am at St Michael & St George Community Hall, Commonwealth Avenue, White City W12 7QR.
For more information and a map please download this file (PDF)
Have you used St. Mary's or Queen Charlottes hospitals in the past 18 months?
Parents involved in improving maternity services at Queen Charlotte’s and St. Mary’s have received funding to make a 20 minute film that will provide information to women about antenatal services, birth options, and the support on offer to women once their baby is born. We really want the film to focus on what women think it is most important to know about the service. Please can you help us do this by taking 5 minutes to complete our questionnaire.
Birth environment during C-section
An online survey has been devised to gather information about the choices offered to women about the birth environment during c-section and important factors such as offering skin to skin.
Evening Support Meetings
April 25th: Chiswick, W4 3BS,
May 30th: Nick and Alla Maniatakis, 32 Parkwood Road, Isleworth, TW7 5HA
June 27th: Chiswick, W4 3BS
Evening support meetings run from 8-10pm and there is always at least one Befriender present. If venues or hosts change, we will of course let you know in advance.
For further details of the Evening Support Meetings and the address of those in Chiswick do not hesitate to contact us - Sarah Speake & Martin Tewkesbury, co-chairs of West London Sands
Tel: 07905 714415 Email: email@example.com
Daytime Support Meetings
Daytime Meetings 11am - 1pm
We are in need of venues for Daytime Support Meetings. These meetings are held on the second Friday of each month. We are happy to have a Befriender to go along and support you. If you would like to host a support meeting please email/contact us at: Sarah Speake & Martin Tewkesbury, co-chairs of West London Sands, Tel: 07905 714415 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Tamba BSG (Twin and multiple birth bereavement support service) newsletter - December 6th
Download the Tamba newsletter here (PDF)
Department of Work and Pensions agrees to guidance change to ensure bereaved parents receive maternity benefits
Sands was extremely concerned last year to hear that some mothers whose babies were stillborn, were being refused maternity benefits by some local benefit offices. Following consultation with the Department of Work and Pensions, and in conjunction with the charity, Working Families, Sands is delighted to announce that the Department is making changes to Maternity Allowance Guidance to ensure mothers of stillborn babies receive the benefits they are legally entitled to.
In future, bereaved parents will only have to produce evidence of stillbirth by way of a birth certificate when claiming Maternity Allowance and Statutory Maternity Pay. While the guidance is being updated, should any parents whose baby is stillborn and who have been issued with a stillbirth certificate, be denied benefits they should contact Prabhavati Mistry at the Department of Work and Pensions who will look into their case Prabhavati.Mistry@dwp.gsi.gov.uk
Hillingdon Hospital Services of Remembrance for all Bereaved Parents and their families:
These services are held on the second Saturday of March, June, September and December at 11am in St Luke's Chapel, Lower Ground Floor Hillingdon Hospital, Pield Heath Road, Uxbridge, Middlesex UB8 3NN. Chaplaincy 01895 279 433 All are welcome to join in remembering our babies.
Mumsnet have launched a Miscarriage Code of Care
The link is as follows: http://www.mumsnet.com/campaigns/miscarriage-code-of-care
The Sand Rose Project:
Sand Rose is not connected to Sands/WLS but has a similar name by coincidence.
This charity has 3 cottages with beautiful peaceful gardens in Cornwall where families affected by any bereavement can stay for free. They have a website at www.sandrose.org.uk
They offer one or two week breaks in Cornwall and they can also offer short breaks if needed.
The Sand Rose Project works through a nomination process. All requests for a break must be supported by a nominee. WLS as an organisation can nominate parents or families, so if you feel that anyone you know would benefit from a break we could nominate them. The charity are very clear to say that it’s not a ‘holiday’ but a peaceful break.
They usually book 3 – 6 months in advance.
Subsidised travel costs are available upon request.
If/when you have anyone in mind and if you have further questions, please feel free to call
Opportunities to help with research
"At a loss" research
Dr Samantha Murphy has contacted WLS to assist her. She is looking for parents who have had a stillbirth and those who have had a neonatal death but have chosen not to have a Post Mortem.
Her contact details are: Dr Samantha Murphy, Lecturer, Faculty of Health and Social Care, Room 012 Horlock Building, The Open University, Walton Hall, Milton Keynes MK7 6AA. Tel: +44 (0) 1908 655616
More information on the research proposal can be found here (PDF)
The BRACELET Study
We have been contacted by The BRACELET Study to ask whether parents would be able to help with their work. They are looking at policy and practice in neonatal intensive care units.
Was your baby involved in a clinical trial in neonatal intensive care? Researchers are looking for bereaved parents who would talk to them about their experiences. This is important because the views of bereaved parents have not be sought out until now and those views will help guide how research into treatments for very sick babies might be run in the future.
If you would like to know more about the study you can go to www.bracelet-study.org.uk or you can contact the researchers by email or telephone: Dr Claire Snowdon and Professor Diana Elbourne; 0770 3716112; 0207 9272629. email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org
Parental experiences of neonatal death with regard to decision-making around having a post mortem
My name is Dr Sam Murphy and I am one of a team of researchers at the Open University who are interested in exploring parental experiences of neonatal death with regard to decision-making around having a post mortem.
At present we are putting together an application for some funding and would like to involve bereaved mothers and fathers in these early stages of planning the research. If successful we would then be looking to involve parents in the process of the research, that is, to sit on the steering committee. The committee would not meet often, probably once every three months over the course of the research, which is expected to last no more than two years.
If you are interested in taking part, please do not hesitate to get in touch with me using the contact details below. I am happy to call you on a mobile. Please be assured that all discussion will remain confidential.
Dr Samantha Murphy, Lecturer, Health Studies, Module Chair K260, Co-convenor of the BSA Human Reproduction Study Group, Faculty of Health and Social Care, Room 012, Horlock Building, The Open University, Walton Hall, Milton Keynes MK7 6AA
Tel: +44 (0) 1908 655616, email: S.L.Murphy@open.ac.uk
West London Sands©2013