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Mum launches Christmas Tree of Hope in memory lost children

A bereaved mum has set up a Christmas tree where families who have suffered the loss of a baby or a pregnancy can place a special decoration in their child’s memory.

Amelia Grant lost her daughter Isabelle to stillbirth seven years ago, and she has set up a charity to support families going through similar heartache.

Amelia Grant who has setup a baby loss support charity in honour of her stillborn daughter Isabelle. Picture: Keith Heppell. (25011530)
Amelia Grant who has setup a baby loss support charity in honour of her stillborn daughter Isabelle. Picture: Keith Heppell. (25011530)

The charity, Isabelle’s Hope, has placed a Christmas tree in All Saints Church, Milton, where parents and other grieving family members can have a dove ornament inscribed with a message or their child’s name.

Amelia said: “The charity is still in its infancy, but this Christmas we thought it would be nice to create the remembrance dove – Isabelle’s Hope’s logo is a dove and we have these little wooden decorations we would like to place on a Christmas tree of hope for anybody that has experienced loss of a pregnancy or a baby.

“It is for any family members who want to remember the life that is not going to be here this Christmas.”

She added: “I think Christmas can be very difficult for anyone who has gone through this. As parents you want to remember their life, but people often don’t know how to approach you – people don’t know whether to approach mentioning or remembering, so it can be a tough time of year for families.

“I have two other children, but I imagine the families who are going through this now – it must be really hard for them.”

Isabelle was stillborn in 2012 at 38 weeks. A routine scan revealed that her heart had stopped.

“We were in complete shock and we never had an answer as to why that happened to Isabelle.

“The pregnancy itself was monitored because my son before Isabelle was born prematurely at 31 weeks, but it was going really well. I had a routine check at the hospital and it was at that point was her heart was found not to be beating.”

Afterwards, just when she needed the support of friends, Amelia discovered that many people couldn’t cope with speaking to her or didn’t know what to say.

“I want people to not be frightened to speak to parents who have been bereaved. I want to talk about Isabella and I think any parent who goes through this wants to talk about their baby.

“But, because it’s a taboo subject to talk about death, it is brushed under the carpet.

“People would cross the street to avoid talking to me after I lost Isabelle. At the time it was devastating because I was going through a number of different emotions. I felt guilty that maybe I had done something wrong as a mother. I wanted to speak to other people who had gone through this.”

Amelia wants Isabelle’s Hope to offer people the opportunity to find others going through the same situation so that they can offer each other support.

“Having gone through this, I would hope I could support others because I know what they are going through,” said Amelia. “I also wanted to launch the charity to support myself in my own journey with grief because it’s something I can do that’s positive out of such devastation.

“It turned our lives upside down.

“Supporting others is something that I hold very close to my heart.”

Remembrance doves are available to purchase for £3.50 and will be displayed on the Christmas tree at All Saints Church in Milton.

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