Support is available 24 hours a day, for anyone affected by the death of a baby.
At Sands Queensland there are people who understand what it’s like to grieve for a baby because they have been through this experience themselves. People have many different needs at this time and Sands Queensland is here to offer the support you need.
Our aim is to support parents and families when a baby dies during pregnancy or soon after birth by offering empathy, understanding, information and resources, as well as the opportunity to talk, listen and share experiences in a safe, non-judgmental and caring environment. We offer a wide range of support services including:
24 hour Parent Support Line
1300 0 sands (1300 0 72637)
Bereaved parents, family members and health professionals can talk in confidence to an experienced parent support volunteer. The parent supporters are on call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Our parent supporters are volunteers so if you reach an answering machine, please leave a message and they will return your call as soon as possible.
Sometimes it can be easier to communicate by email than by phone. When you email a parent supporter, they will return your email and offer support and information.
Support Group Meetings
Many parents find comfort in talking with other bereaved parents. Sharing experiences can help reduce the feelings of isolation that are often felt. Support groups take place in many areas of Queensland. A full list of support meetings can be found on here.
Sands Queensland has many active regional groups and contacts, including a strong presence in Cairns, Toowoomba, Sunshine Coast, Mackay and Townsville. Remember that you can call the Parent Support Line 1300 0 sands (1300 0 72637) to speak with a parent supporter at any time, no matter where you live in Australia. We may also be able to put you in contact with other bereaved parents in your area.
Our library contains a large range of resources including books, DVDs and videos on topics relevant to bereaved parents. You can read more details on our library here. These resources are available for loan by dropping into the Sands Queensland office or they can be mailed to you. The library service is free but a donation of stamps to cover postage is always welcome.
Our newsletter provides information and support, and a link with other parents. Many find it especially helpful to read about the experiences of other bereaved parents and to know they are not alone. Three complimentary issues of the newsletter are available for all parents who are new to Sands Queensland. You can view some of our previous newsletters here. The newsletter is produced by volunteer parents at our New Farm office.
A comprehensive range of booklets and brochures relating to grief and loss following the death of a baby is available. These have been written for and by bereaved parents. A full list of available publications is available here.
Please like our page to help riase awareness of our organisation and to keep up to date with the latest news and information. Townsvillle and Toowoomba regional areas also have their own Facebook pages if you live in those areas.
Online Support Groups
Sands Queensland has three support groups through Facebook groups, to provide a safe, private space to chat with other bereaved parents at any time, online. Our main support group is Sands Parents. This is a closed group and only members can see what is posted within the group. There is also a group especially for men, Sands Bereaved Dad’s Group, which is also a closed group. To join either of these please click on the link and click on ‘join’ in the top right corner. For the protection of our parents and their privacy we ask that you also send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org to introduce yourself. An adminstrator will then need to approve your request to join.
Our other group is the Subsequent Pregnancy group, for those parents who are going through/or have had a subsequent pregnancy. This is a ‘secret’ group and only members can see who is in the group and what is posted. Please contact email@example.com to join this group.
Sands Queensland advocates on behalf of all bereaved parents in relation to relevant issues that may arise. Examples include: the registration of babies born after 20 weeks and the recognition of stillborn babies by Centrelink. Sands Queensland will also advocate on behalf of individual parents where appropriate.
You don’t have to be a member of Sands Queensland to access these services but paying the small membership fee helps us continue our work to support bereaved families. More information on becoming a member can be found here.