Events in Western Australia 2017

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Sands WA’s Remembrance Garden flourishes in Perth City to encourage Awareness of Stillbirth and Infant Death

15/10/2016

Sands WA’s Remembrance Garden flourishes in Perth City to encourage Awareness of Stillbirth and Infant DeathIMG 5139

A floral garden installation set up in the Murray Street Mall, Perth, was encouraging passers by to look differently at miscarriage, stillbirth and infant death and just how often this taboo subject really affect families.

Sands WA used the art installation on Saturday to raise awareness of just how prevalent miscarriage, stillbirth and newborn death is our society and to open discussions with the public on this subject.

“We find that a when a baby dies, the family is often consoled immediately following the death, but grief lasts longer than the flowers and cards do. Not many people outside the mother and father ever had a chance to bond with baby, many times bereaved parents are forced by social conventions to ‘get on with it’. Being able to move forward in your life doesn’t mean we ever forget our precious babies, and we felt that visually representing just how many of us are touched by this, in a way that gently reminds everyone those babies- our babies, are never forgotten.”

Sands WA Vice-President, Kyla Woods

This installation co-insides with International Pregnancy & Infant Loss Awareness Day, and that was no accident. International Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Day was on the 15th of October and is recognised as an international day to honour and remember all babies who don’t survive, anytime from conception to early infancy.

 

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Why flowers? “Because although there is overwhelming sorrow when a baby dies, there is also a lot of love for the child and we wanted to use the flower garden to represent that unbroken love and connection.” Kyla explains.

Passers by were able to interact with the Sands WA peer support volunteers or just to silently place a flower within the garden, with each flower represents a baby that WA families were never able to see grow up. Sands WA also utilised social media channels with many parents requesting a flower be placed on their behalf. A volunteer parent supporter would then name the flowers as they were placed and many parents requesting a photo of their child’s (or childrens) flower. What was striking was seeing how many of the flowers were placed together. “Yes, they signify multiple losses within one family, we had one parent request ten flowers be placed together to represent her babies”

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Sands WA Peer Supporters hear to listen

Sands WA are a group of peer to peer support volunteers, Sands has a 24/7 phone line, email support and runs regular monthly support meetings for bereaved parents, they are also currently securing a premises to run a family support group where families with young children and mothers who are subsequently pregnant after loss can come and find a friendly, supportive and positive place to meet with families who have similar experiences. 

For further information or if you need support please contact Sands WA:

Sands 24/7 phone line 1300 072 637

Support Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.