A number of landmarks across the Isle of Man will be lit up in pink and blue from this weekend to mark Baby Loss Awareness Week.
From 9 to 15 October, Baby Loss Awareness Week will be marked on the Island as part of the wider UK campaign, held every year. This year will highlight the isolation experienced by many following pregnancy and the sad loss of their much-wanted babies. This year has been particularly tough due to COVID-19 restrictions that were in place earlier in 2021. To help raise awareness of this subject, local companies will illuminate their buildings in pink and blue as a mark of respect and solidarity.
The Tower of Refuge will be lit up on Saturday 9 October, as well as Ramsey’s swing bridge and the front of Noble’s Hospital. In addition, the power station at Pulrose will be lit in pink and blue for the whole week, from 9 to 15 October.
On Friday 15 October, the ‘Forget Me Not’ and ‘A Little Piece of Hope’ charities will team up to bring the Wave of Light service to Douglas once again. The event will be held at the Villa Marina Gardens balcony from 6:30pm, and will be livestreamed on A Little Piece of Hope’s Facebook event page for those who cannot attend in person.
Later in the year, a service for parents who have lost a child through stillbirth or miscarriage is to be held at St. Thomas’ Church in Douglas. Midwives at Noble’s Hospital organise the STAR (Still Treasured, Always Remembered) service each year to support bereaved families. This year’s service will take place on 28 December at 2pm, and will give families some space after the hustle and bustle of Christmas to remember their little ones through music, poems, readings and reflection. The service will be open for any member of the public to attend, and the bereavement charities will also be in attendance.
The theme of this year’s Baby Loss Awareness campaign is wellbeing, and Baby Loss Awareness UK will be holding free virtual panel discussions every weekday on their Facebook page, allowing people to talk with others who understand what they are going through.
Manx Care’s Lead Midwife for Bereavement, Dianne Rubery, commented:
'It’s important that we continue to show support and solidarity to parents and family members of babies who are born sleeping. In recent times particularly, when people may be feeling more isolated, it’s vital that anyone who’s experienced the loss of a baby is able to talk about the struggles they may be experiencing. This week is a time for people to reflect and to reach out if they need help or support.'