We are absolutely delighted to announce that Our Sam is now a registered charity (CIO) – Registered Charity Number 1191411
This was the first big step we needed to take, and we are now really looking forward to developing and delivering our planned initiatives.
As a charity, we will support anyone affected personally, or professionals coming into contact with anyone affected by baby loss (recent or past), as a result of Miscarriage, TFMR (termination for medical reasons), Stillbirth and Neonatal Death through our initiatives including –
• Raising awareness and understanding of the journey of baby loss
• Enabling greater knowledge of, and access to, any support provision that may be needed by parents and families during all the different stages of baby loss and beyond
• Undertaking academic research to feed in to regional and national policy and guidelines for baby loss support provision.
We are delighted that Philippa Davies, Founder of Our Sam, will be going forward with us as CEO.
Philippa is a Postgraduate Biologist, Lecturer in Life Sciences, and also a Writer in Creative Arts. She is Mum to Sam, who was stillborn in 2012, and the babies she has lost due to multiple miscarriages, that resulted in her never achieving her dream of becoming a parent. Philippa has many years’ experience working within the third sector, developing and delivering community initiatives that have involved cross-sector collaboration, to enable the improvement of the quality of life for individuals experiencing barriers to progression, including mental health conditions that have developed from situational experiences, something that she is only too familiar with from her own personal experiences.
She has delivered many projects that have gone on, through sustained partnerships, to successfully bridge gaps in awareness and understanding, enabling greater support and progression, for individuals affected by issues that have, through a lack of understanding, been considered taboo.
A message from Philippa
“Following my own experiences, and the experiences of other parents and families affected by baby loss, as well as healthcare and guidance professionals, that have been shared with me in recent years, particularly since the development of my play ‘Dancing in the Wings’, I really want to now use my professional, academic and creative skills, to do everything I can as CEO for Our Sam to improve the heartbreakingly difficult journey for all those affected by baby loss.
My hope is that through a creative, collaborative and person-centred approach, we will be able to work to make a difference, alongside the fantastic charities that are already out there supporting baby loss, to enable a more consistent, accessible and much needed greater level of support and understanding. In addition, particularly through our creative projects, we hope to reduce isolation, have fun, and in time, help to reduce the taboo of something that sadly affects so many people so deeply, and yet continues to be a subject that many people don’t know how to approach or talk about.
Our Sam, is named after our own daughter, but the important part of our charity’s name is the word ‘Our’, meaning ‘Belonging to us’. This is for all bereaved parents and families, who have lost a very special little person, belonging to them, who may have been invisible in many cases to the rest of the world, but for every parent and family, that unborn or new life was their baby ‘belonging to them’, and I would like everyone to understand the importance of that. The importance that these babies who are lost in such early stages of their development and life, aren’t just miscarriages or stillbirths or neonatal deaths, they are a much loved and wanted member of a family, and hence the reason that the trauma, grief and sadness is real, and frequently results in feelings of isolation, failure, hopelessness, and ongoing mental health conditions. Support and understanding is vital. We can’t bring back babies, but it is so important that as a population on both a professional and personal level we can work together to provide the much needed support at any stage of the journey for the parents and families left behind from a loss that should never happen, but tragically for 1 in 4 pregnancies, does.”
We will now spend a period of time developing the initiatives that we hope to start delivering early in 2021.
We would like to thank everyone who has so far, followed and supported Philippa’s, and our journey as an organisation, on social media, your support has been incredible, and continues to mean a huge amount.
We would also like to thank the following organisations and individuals for their direct support and guidance in helping Our Sam achieve Charity Status –
Neville Southall MBE (Our Patron)
Paul Williams and everyone Cheshire Connect https://www.cheshireconnect.org/
Anne Davies MBE
Andrew Evans https://www.thinkphilanthropy.com/
Kate Blakemore CEO Motherwell Cheshire CIO http://motherwellcheshirecio.com/
Dr Georgina Crossman
Claire and Sandra Williams
And of course we’d like to thank Sam’s Dad @DadofOurSam for his support with the development of the website and technical support for Our Sam.