Our Angel Bears
UK Support Orginisation
How Our Angel Bears started.
Our Angel Bears are three bereaved mothers Suzanne, Victoria and Kerri who started our page to help families who have suffered the devastating loss of a child, the team members have each suffered multiple losses from first and second trimester miscarriages to neonatal loss, totalling 16 between us -Suzanne has nine , Victoria has four and Kerri has three . We felt that there wasn't a lot of support available to help families especially in first trimester loss and that families needed a safe space where they could talk about their babies and not be judged, not be told to get over it, or it wasn't really a baby because the loss happened early. We as a team had heard these comments so many times and we knew how much they hurt. This is where we decided to unite in our grief to form Our Angel Bears.
WHAT DO WE DO?
As the page started gaining more likes and we were building up a rapport with other grieving parents, we were saddened by how many stories we were hearing of people leaving their hospitals empty handed when they were supposed to leave a hospital with a baby, as a team we decided that we would like to send keepsakes to anybody who didn’t have any acknowledgement of their baby, we knew this may prove to be costly but from the feedback from the recipients of our hospital keepsakes and our own experiences we knew this was something we wanted to try. Families can apply for these through our online application form. Since October 2017 to date we have managed to send out almost 300 packages of these keepsakes (mostly in the UK but some to the USA) as well as our hospital keepsakes. We are so blessed that people kindly donate postal costs to us when possible but otherwise we fund these out of our own wages or when we sell promotional items.
We assist the nurses from the Early Pregnancy Unit at Royal Bournemouth Hospital to run an informal support group every quarter. These meet ups for bereaved parents so they can share their experiences and be supported by others going through or have suffered pregnancy loss. The loss could be recent or years ago everyone is welcome to attend. The support group has been running for 2 years. EPU nurse Wendy Copping says of the support groups. “We at Royal Bournemouth are so very proud of the links we have with Our Angel Bears support network. Our ladies/couples who sadly suffer miscarriage gain great comfort from the little memory gift bags offered to them when attending the EPU Discovering that you sadly suffered a miscarriage is something that causes terrible distress and often despair. The Our Angel Bears support group has provided untold love, friendship and support to bereaved parents and relatives and without tis our early pregnancy unit would not be the same. I am proud to be a part of it and it’s such an asset to Royal Bournemouth.
Clothing for angel babies:
Recently we have been receiving emails from hospitals asking for our help in supplying them with clothing and other items for angel babies of all gestational ages. We have a wonderful team of knitters and crocheters who help make this possible. We are able to regularly send items of clothing, comforters, wraps and cocoons to these hospitals. Our hope is that parents feel some joy in being able to do as many things as they can with their baby before they begin their final journey earth side.
These are some of the lovely messages and comments we have received from page members of Our Angel Bears
You are the most wonderful, amazing, caring wonderful sweethearts who will do anything to help parents grandparents and everyone who needs the comfort you bring after a loss of a baby or a child and I really can't thank you enough – Maura Davey, Pauls mummy
Our package has just been delivered and me and my family are in tears the package is amazing thank you so much can't believe the amount of things that were in it we’ll keep it forever – Ellie De-Gernier, Jonathon’s mummy
Hello, my name's Louise. I just wanted to say thank you for the bear packages that you gave to Amy to pass on to me at your support group. I was incredibly touched, particularly as you gave me 3, one for each miscarriage. It's so lovely to have each one acknowledged and to have some tangible mementos to remember them by. There's so much love and effort put into those packages and they will be so comforting. I also wanted to say what a great thing you are doing and how much it would've helped my husband and I to have had a support system like yours when we were going through each loss. When I brought the packages home last night and showed my husband, we both had a few tears and had a real heart to heart for the first time in quite a while and now we both feel much more positive and on the same page about trying again. So thank you for making that happen Louise White – Baby White’s Mummy
I just wanted to say that I came across the angel bears website when I lost my three beautiful angels & I can honestly say that at the hardest time of my life this support group has massively helped. Suzanne is such a sweetheart and has helped me so much with the group and being able to share my story with women who share my pain and loss. Even though it was so hard to speak about at first it helped me on my journey to live with the loss of my angels, but still carry all the love in my heart. Suzanne has not only become someone I could speak to whenever I was struggling, but a true friend. A beautiful soul and an inspiration. Thank you so much angel bears for being my rock when I was sinking. I’ll be forever lucky to be a part of such love and support like I have had throughout my ongoing journey- Charlotte Beard, mummy of 3 angels
Our Angel Bears has been a fantastic support to so many bereaved families. They have provided understanding and comfort around the clock. They are a wonderful team who have sadly experienced the same loss themselves, so understand the multitude and direction of emotions, a listening ear through their site, as well as respectful space when it's needed. Interest is shown, but never intrusive. Our Angel Bears go above and beyond to support families who they don't know, very regularly spending their own money - not just their time - in order to provide the much-needed comfort necessary. The level of support they give can be highlighted by the level of followers they have on social media - the numbers of people who recognise them as a positive 'safe space' speak for themselves. All members of the team are respectful, friendly, understanding, inspirational and supportive. They come together to unite a community of comfort when it's needed the most. I have a massive respect for the team, I thank them for the ongoing support, loyalty, friendship and understanding they have shown me, and I hope they continue to flourish in the future in all aspects. It's amazing how they give so much of their time - creating packs for hospitals; supporting people on an individual level as well as a supportive network online, regular social events for them to speak with people in a small group in a relaxed setting... the list is endless, without expectation of anything in return. These are VERY special people and I would love for them to get the recognition they deserve. Thank you team Our Angel Bears for all you do - you are amazing. Liz Austin Youle, Baby Youle’s mummy
A few months ago I lost my angel Finley, after his funeral I was given a small bag which I briefly looked at and in blind grief put in his keepsake, now his due day is here and I struggle in tears I reach for that box looking at scan pictures memories of what I hoped would be then I found your bag, I do not know you but I would like to thank you, I can’t pretend it heals the pain but the knitted hearts (may sound silly) but keeping them near makes me feel close to him and makes me feel like someone understands. Giving these gifts is such a lovely thing to do thank you so much. Natalie Sandom – Finley’s mummy
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