Last month Sands Bereavement Support Services Manager Erica Stewart visited Barking Mosque to present on grief and grieving, why the death of a baby is unique, and to explain the work done by Sands. Erica visited at the invitation of the Muslim Bereavement Support Service (MBSS) which was set up by Mohamed Omer in 2012 at the Gardens of Peace Muslim Cemetery in Ilford.

Mohamed Omer (now a Trustee of MBSS) recognised that although bereaved Muslim women have their Islamic faith, they also needed emotional support and someone to talk to who has an understanding of baby and child bereavement.

Sands has played a major role in training of the volunteers at MBSS since it was first established and there is now a team of fully-trained female volunteers based at the Gardens of Peace.  They give support and guidance to bereaved Muslim mothers after the death of their baby, in accordance with the Qur’an and Ahadeeth with information on the bereavement process and advice on prayers and other religious aspects. They also offer practical support and information. All bereaved Muslim mothers are given a copy of the Islamic book ‘A Gift for the Bereaved Parent’ which is also available on the Sands shop at £4.95 www.uk-sands.org

Erica’s recent training was very successful and received some very positive feedback and Sands and MBSS look forward to continuing to work together in the future.