Break the Silence around Baby Loss this October

A mother whose baby sadly passed away at less than a month old is encouraging others to speak up and seek support.

Amy Lucas, from Coventry, is sharing her story as part of Baby Loss Awareness Week, running from October 9 to 15.

In January 2017, Amy suffered a miscarriage. She decided to carry on with IVF as planned and, at 25 weeks pregnant, her water broke suddenly.

After a traumatic birth, Callum arrived into the world weighing only 2lb. Despite surprising everyone, he sadly passed away at only 28 days old.

In Callum's memory, Amy raised over £5,000 for the Neonatal Unit at University Hospital in Coventry. She is keen to reassure others that help is at hand.

She said: “For me, it took four months to seek support. For others, it takes years. There is never a right or wrong time to grieve.

“Support groups give you the chance to talk about your own experiences in a relaxed environment. For many, it’s a chance to remember their children with those who also long to remember theirs.

“Together we can raise awareness, support one another and make a change.”

University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire (UHCW) NHS Trust has organised a range of activities as part of Baby Loss Awareness Week.

It is holding an information stand in the reception area of University Hospital to showcase the support and guidance available to anyone who has experienced or been affected in any way by the loss of a baby. A memory tree is being set up to share thoughts and feelings.

A special service is also being held in the Faith Centre at University Hospital from 1.30pm on Wednesday, October 9 to offer quiet reflection, prayers and the chance to light candles.

Samantha Collinge, Maternity Bereavement Service Manager at UHCW, said: “Pregnancy loss or the death of a baby is a tragedy that affects thousands every year.

“It is devastating for parents and families and it’s vital they get the bereavement support and care they need, for as long as they need it.

“We want parents to know that we and countless other organisations across Coventry and Warwickshire are here for them every step of the way. This could be in the immediate hours and days after experiencing a loss or weeks and months in the future.”

A baby loss service is being held at Coventry Cathedral from 2pm on Sunday, October 13. The event, open to everyone, has been organised by UHCW, the George Eliot Hospital in Nuneaton and South Warwickshire NHS Foundation Trust, as well as partner organisations.

Bereaved parents, families and friends are also invited to light a candle at 7pm on Tuesday, October 15 and leave it burning for at least an hour in memory of babies who died too soon.