In January, local Worksop charity Joel — The Complete Package made history by hosting the first ever national conference in the north of England on the emotional subject of baby loss through miscarriage or stillbirth. Thank you to the National Lottery Peoples’ Projects funding through the charity’s ‘Rainbow Rocks’ campaign in 2017, the conference entitled ‘Life After Loss’ attracted GPs, nurses, midwives, funeral directors, bereaved families and other charities came together at the prestigious venue, The School of Artisan Food at Welbeck.
The aim of the conference was to educate, empower and inspire the delegates to leave with a positive message of the support available to families after a loss. The atmosphere throughout the day was vibrant and positive and despite or in spite of their own losses the speakers who shared their own journeys considered themselves ‘lucky’ to have received the support that they had from charities such as Joel and other organisations.
Eleven families a day are affected by the loss of a baby. That is a fact that the charity cannot change. However, what they can do to support families, and by families they mean the wider family to include children and grandparents by offering a wide range of support options to help them return to their ‘normal’
During the conference Joel — The Complete Package launched their new pregnancy journal, which has been created by people who have been in the same position of being through a rainbow pregnancy (a rainbow pregnancy is a pregnancy which follows a loss). The Journal offers motivational quotes and an opportunity for mum to be to document feelings and anxieties which are normal in rainbow pregnancies, which can be a difficult time for the whole family.
The charity also launched their new employer and employee packs which will be part of a training programme to work with some of the areas larger employers to ensure that when a family member, returns to work after a loss they feel fully supported.
And finally, the charity launched their sibling packs which are aimed at offering children of all ages who have lost a brother or sister through baby loss to be supported appropriately at school. Joel are already engaged with some of the local primary schools and academies and this work will be further developed over the next 12 months.