Welcome to this new Sands publication, Spotlight on Sands.
We want to be able to share with everyone not only all the different things we are doing, but also personal experiences, and ways to become more involved if you would like to – and Spotlight seemed to be a good way to do all these things A magazine that lies on the kitchen table can be picked up and read while you wait for the kettle to boil; can be shared with friends; can be given to bereaved parents – we wanted to produce a magazine that works for everyone and would love to hear what you think about it. (see page 2)
Sands’ wants to make a real difference for anyone affected by the death of a baby. Parents, members and volunteers have told us what is needed, and their ideas are inspiring, generous and rightly ambitious. We need to make sure that we reduce the number of babies dying every day before, during and shortly after birth; we need to make sure that everyone affected by the death of a baby receives the best possible bereavement care wherever they live and whichever hospital or maternity unit they are in; and we need to make sure that the amazing support that we, as Sands, offer reaches everyone who needs it.
Now is the right time to be clearly identifying the differences that we want to see and that we want to make – clinicians, researchers, governments and policy makers all have a real focus on the issues around stillbirth and neonatal death at the moment and we must take advantage of this opportunity.
Charities play a key role when different sectors all recognise the importance of a problem and are committed to working on it together, and so I believe that Sands has a very important role to play. Most importantly we can represent the voice of bereaved parents – a powerful voice that needs to be heard and used to find the way forward, to leverage the change that is needed. But we are also in a position to see and be involved in the many strands of activity – and seeing the bigger picture allows us to help put the different pieces of the jigsaw together.
I would like to say a big thank you for your ongoing commitment and support to the work of Sands.
It is an enormous privilege to be a part of Sands and to feel the real commitment and energy from everyone to continue to make a real difference for parents both now and in the future.