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  • Writer's pictureLinda Andrews - Editorial Assistant, Nuse Online

Birmingham Business Funds £2k CuddleCot For New Baby Loss Centre

A new centre for baby loss which recently opened in Birmingham, has taken delivery of a CuddleCot worth £2k thanks to a donation funded by DRD Capital in Birmingham.

The special refrigerated cot has been presented to the newly opened Woodland House at Birmingham Women’s Hospital, by The Luca Foundation. The CuddleCots are designed to act like a refrigerator to keep the body cold which allows the parents to have up to a week with their baby and, if they wish to, even take them home with that equipment.

Sharon Luca-Chatha’s life was turned upside down in June 2012 when she lost her precious son to stillbirth at 36 weeks. Since then she has gone on to give the ‘gift of time’ to more than 3,000 grieving families and donated and repaired more than 120 CuddleCots for maternity units, neonatal intensive care units and paediatric wards through her award-winning Luca Foundation.

Sharon is driven by her vision to fund enough cuddle cots to service every maternity unit throughout the UK and then turn her attentions to cuddle blankets, for under 18s. She said:

“A CuddleCot will give the families the ‘gift of time’ with their baby that they would not otherwise have. When a baby dies, there is a lot of information to take in, forms to sign, post-mortem to discuss etc. therefore the extra time is very much needed to take in all that has happened and the trauma that comes with that."

“It is instrumental for the mental health of the parents and family, often including young siblings, for the grieving process to start with their baby in their arms. The long-term effects of not having a CuddleCot, such as in my case, can lead to chronic illness from the trauma of not having enough time with your baby."

"For me, four years later, I was diagnosed with Fibromyalgia, which led to me grieving the loss of my health, successful career and independence, along with my never-ending grief for my son."

“I am still working through this trauma with EMDR therapy, but the anger of what happened to us is the fire within me that wants to ensure all parents in these tragic dark times have access to a working CuddleCot, something I wish I had had.”

Woodland House, which was built at the side of Birmingham Women’s Hospital, cares for over 2,000 grieving parents every year who have lost a baby through miscarriage, stillbirth or neonatal death. The £3m centre – the first of its kind in the UK – was funded over three years by donations and corporate sponsorship. It is designed to be a safe haven in which families can grieve, away from the maternity ward.

The Luca Foundation has is now hoping to raise further funds and awareness at the charity’s second Gala Dinner, on May 11th.

This year’s event at Birmingham’s Park Regis Hotel, is being hosted by comedian Tommy Sandhu and MC Sandra Godley OBE and includes a welcome glass of fizz, three-course meal and dancing to a DJ. A raffle and auction on the night will help further boost funds, one of the top prizes including a private dinner for four people cooked in your own home by 2021 Masterchef winner Dan Lee, from Birmingham.

Venture capital firm DRD Capital is also headline sponsor for this event. Any businesses that would like to donate a raffle or auction prize or get involved as a sponsor, can contact Sharon here.


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