We have partnered with Project Linus UK to ensure that families across Scotland can be offered a lovingly handmade blanket to wrap their precious child within during a most painful time when they are saying goodbye and leaving the hospital after their child has died.
We know from parents’ stories of their own experience that their child’s clothing and bedding being removed adds additional distress at a time when things are unimaginably difficult.
It is a small token, but we wanted to offer something to families which shows compassion and warmth and to extend our sympathy – a blanket made just for their child seemed appropriate. In addition, a single patchwork square made at the same time as their child’s blanket, is for them to keep with them – to provide a link, when it is so hard to leave without their child.
These blankets are being made by wonderful Project Linus UK volunteers in Scotland. Each patchwork blanket is carefully handcrafted and is unique. They are lined in a beautiful soft fleece and have a small pocket that parents may want to place a lock of their own hair or family photograph within. Families may wish for the blanket only to be used in the hospital or until their child is returned to them for their funeral. The choice is for each family to do whatever provides them with some comfort.
Project Linus UK provides blankets to many families, mostly for children who are unwell and for their siblings. When we spoke with coordinators in Scotland, Sandra Kinnoch and Fiona Miller, they were delighted to reach out and ask their volunteers to support families bereaved by SUDI. We are so grateful to them for providing these blankets. The skill and care are evident and those volunteers making these blankets know that families receiving them need to be wrapped in love, to help them through such a painful time.
More stunning blankets arrived last week and have already been boxed up and sent to A&E departments across Scotland to ensure they are offered to families who sadly need this token of warmth and comfort. Along with each blanket is information about the Scottish Cot Death Trust and contact details for families to ask a professional to refer them for compassionate specialist bereavement support, or if they feel able, to self-refer themselves.
You can find out more about Project Linus UK at www.projectlinusuk.org.uk