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Norwich hospital scheme to help bereaved parents

PUBLISHED: 12:00 30 June 2010 | UPDATED: 17:38 01 July 2010

Karen Murray-Tye with her stillborn baby's grave

Karen Murray-Tye with her stillborn baby's grave

Victoria Leggett

Two Norfolk mums who both experienced the heartache of a stillborn baby are hoping to help other parents grieve by starting up a memory boxes scheme at a Norwich hospital.

Two Norfolk mums who both experienced the heartache of a stillborn baby are hoping to help other parents grieve by starting up a memory boxes scheme at a Norwich hospital.

Karen Murray-Tye and Suzanne Casson both lost little girls and are now determined to ease the suffering of other mothers and fathers.

“It's the comfort of knowing somebody has thought about you and knowing you're not alone,” said Mrs Murray-Tye, who lives in Aylsham. “When it happened to me, I didn't know anybody else who had been through it. I did feel really alone and that nobody understood.”

Hana's Gift: In Loving Memory of Hana and Chloe is a way of giving parents who find themselves unexpectedly grieving a keepsake to remember their baby.

The Norfolk and Norwich University (NNUH) already has a baby bereavement group, which works hard to help families affect by stillbirth, but has agreed to take a small number of the silver memory boxes - which parents can personalise with their own decorations - on a trial.

A spokesman said: “Hana's Gift is a lovely idea and although we are happy to offer this to women, we must re-member it is the woman's choice as to what mementos she wishes to have.”

The boxes will contain items like a blanket and teddy bear, which parents can lay beside their baby, as well as a booklet of hymns and a candle to light in memory of their child.

Mrs Murray-Tye said: “Some people go in to hospital and don't know they have lost their baby so they don't have those things with them. I thought it would be nice to have something to bring away with you so you feel you have got something to remind you of your baby, rather than leaving empty handed.”

The 31-year-old never discovered why little Hana was born just 25 weeks into her pregnancy without a heartbeat in January 2006.

She met Mrs Casson, of Acle, whose daughter Chloe was stillborn in 2003, through an online community of griev-ing “Angel Mum's”.

Both were determined to help parents who were suffering the way they had and decided to work together on Hana's Gift.

As well as creating the memory boxes, the mothers also hope to help out with the cost of memorial stones and plaques.

All the money needed will be collected through fundraising events, including a sponsored walk which will take place in Norwich on July 31.

To find out more about Hana's Gift, or help with fundraising, visit www.hanasgift.webs.com or call Mrs Murray-Tye on 07968 143651.

Do you have a health-related story? Call reporter Sarah Hall on 01603 772426 or email sarah.hall2@archant.co.uk

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