Memorial tree helps bereaved families

Forth Valley Royal Hospital unveils memorial tree for families affected by a lost pregnancy, stillborn or death of a child

A special memorial tree for families affected by a lost pregnancy, stillborn or death of a child or infant is now in place in the Spiritual Care Centre at Forth Valley Royal Hospital.

People will have the opportunity to have a metal ‘leaf’ placed on the branches in remembrance of their loss.

The copper tree has been purchased by the hospital’s women and children’s bereavement team and was designed by Bronwen Glazzard and made by sculptor, Gary Pickles, from East Yorkshire-based company, Metallic Garden.

The leaves are heart shaped and Falkirk jeweller, Jim Colley, has offered to inscribe them for families free of charge. The leaves can also be returned as a keepsake, should the family wish.

The new initiative was introduced by NHS Forth Valley’s women and children’s bereavement team, who were keen to give local parents an opportunity to express and remember their loss. The team consists of bereavement advisors, Alana Harrower and Susan Milne; and lead bereavement advisor, Catriona Addison.

Addison, who is also a senior charge nurse on the gynaecology ward, said: “For a lot of women, having a memento in remembrance of their loss is very important. It is recognition of the time of pregnancy, whether it is an early loss, a stillborn, or even an infant loss. When we lose adults, we have memories which stay with us and inscribing a leaf is something very precious that a mother can keep.”

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