Local School Raises Money to Help Bereaved Parents

Strand on the Green students present cheque to local charity West London Sands

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(from left) Colette Murphy from West London Sands, Gill Coke from Strand on the Green, Julia Lidderdale from West Mid and Headmaster Mark Newton with children from Strand on the Green School

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West London Sands, a charity which supports bereaved parents throughout and beyond their journey of grief, have recently received a generous cheque for £254 from local primary school Strand on the Green, on behalf of West Middlesex University Hospital. The money will go towards the completion of a new bereavement room created for parents who have recently lost a baby.

West Mid and West London Sands have been working together for the last ten years to improve services at the hospital for bereaved parents. Premature and stillbirth deaths are, unfortunately not as few as many people think. Colette Murphy of West London Sands is keen to raise awareness of bereavement issues:

“We’re actually bereaved parents ourselves and have been working with West Mid to make a real difference. Currently one in four pregnancies is lost . Facts such as these shows that West Mid is really fortunate to have Bereavement Midwife Julia Lidderdale there on the front line. Having a bereavement room will make a huge difference. It will be a real haven for parents as it can be difficult if they remain on the wards and the lady next door is in labour. The room will also help their families and other siblings come to terms with their loss in privacy, away from the busyness of the postnatal ward.”

Strand on the Green school became involved when Grandmother Kathleen Richards, whose daughter recently lost a baby at West Mid, thought that the bereavement room was such a good idea she was inspired to ask Headmaster Mark Newton if he could raise funds for the appeal. Mr Newton was very happy to oblige:

“We were approached by Kathleen and of course wanted to help. So at our annual Summer Dance event performed by the children, we put the word out on the speaker system. We asked people to be as generous as possible and they were!”

Julia Lidderdale, Bereavement midwife at West Mid and Twickenham resident visited Strand on the Green to receive the cheque last week:

“I’m absolutely amazed at the kindness and generosity of the parents of this extraordinary school. It was shock and a surprise, it’s really lovely. It was a very spontaneous gesture and to raise over £254 in one afternoon is fantastic. The money will go towards a coffee maker, a DVD and CD player, ambient lighting, comfortable furniture, a small domestic fridge, aesthetically beautiful soft furnishings and some therapeutic art for bereaved parents and their families”.

Julia also successfully completed the Cabbage Patch ten mile run around Twickenham on Sunday 17th October to raise further funds and has so far raised £300.

October 22, 2010