We are so sorry that your baby has died. At Sands, we understand how devastating it is when a baby dies as many of us have been through the experience ourselves.
We know that everyone grieves differently and there is no right or wrong way to grieve. Each person needs different types of support and this can change over time. Some people may be happy to talk, others might take comfort from quietly reading about others experiences, while some may prefer to meet face to face and share their experience.
Here are the different channels through which we can support you:
Please note that our opening times for the Christmas period are:
- Monday 25th Dec (Christmas Day) – Closed
- Tuesday 26th December (Boxing Day) – Closed
- Weds 27th, Thurs 28th, Fri 29th December - 10am-12pm
- Monday 1st January (New Year's Day) - Closed
We reopen as normal from Tuesday 2nd January (10-3pm Monday to Friday and 6-9pm Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday evenings)
Sands Support Chat
Our Sands Support Chat service is available Monday to Friday, 9am to 9pm.
Losing a baby before, during or shortly after birth is one of the hardest things anyone can face. What takes many people by surprise is how strong the emotions can be, how they can change very quickly, and how long they last. People around you may think you should be ‘back to normal’ after a few weeks or months. At Sands we know that the grief journey can take you to a whole new vision of normality, where your baby's precious life is included.
Everyone grieves in a way that is unique to them.
We know that no-one can understand exactly what losing your baby feels like to you. But we do understand that it’s sometimes easier to talk to someone outside of your friends and family about grief and the impact of bereavement of your life and this is why we offer the Sands Support Chat service, alongside Sands’ Helpline and our other support services.
We are working in partnership with GriefChat to offer you our Sands Support Service. By clicking on the Sands Support Chat box below, you can chat directly to a specially trained bereavement counsellor. GriefChat counsellors are experienced in supporting bereaved people and will listen to your story, explore how your grief is affecting you and help you to find any additional support you might need in our behalf. Sands Support Chat is a completely free service and is available Monday-Friday, 9am-9pm. You can email or message Sands outside of these hours.
Sands Support Chat provides emotional support for bereaved people, access to trained bereavement counsellors and referral on to Sands’ specialist bereavement services.
The Sands National Helpline provides a safe, confidential place for anyone who has been affected by the death of a baby. Whether your baby died long ago or recently, we are here for you.
The telephone helpline is free to call from landlines and mobiles on 0808 164 3332.
The team are available to speak to from 10am to 3pm Monday to Friday and 6pm to 9pm Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday evenings.
The helpline team can also be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org
Sands Helpline is a member of Helplines Partnerships and has been accredited since 2018.
Sands Memory Boxes
Sands Memory Boxes provide a place for parents and families to create and keep memories of their beloved baby.
Sands Memory Boxes are completely free of charge and you can order them through the Sands Shop.
Please note that we are only able to send Memory Boxes to UK addresses.
Local support groups
Many parents feel that only others who have experienced the death of a baby can offer real understanding. Our countrywide network of over 106 local support groups, usually run by bereaved parents and family members, offer you the chance to meet others, gain support and share your experience.
Many Sands groups offer online support meetings, telephone or email support.
Online Support Meetings
If there isn't a group near you, or simply you'd rather seek support online in a group environment, please see the range of meetings we have on offer and book your place in any of them following the link:
Sands Online Communities
When a baby dies bereaved parents can feel very isolated. They don’t usually know anyone else who has had a similar experience. Support from family and friends can sometimes fall away soon afterwards.
The Sands Online Community provides a safe space for bereaved parents to connect with each other and share their feelings 24 hours a day.
Visit the Sands Online Community
The Sands Facebook Support group is a community of parents helping each other through baby loss.
Visit the Sands Support Group on Facebook
Sands Facebook Support Group for men is a community of bereaved men, including dads, brothers, grandparents, and uncles, all helping each other through pregnancy and baby loss.
Visit the Sands Support for Men Group on Facebook
Sands United Football Clubs
Sands United FC is a unique way for bereaved dads, uncles, brothers and other bereaved family members to come together through a shared love of sport and find a support network where they can feel at ease talking about their grief when they're ready.
The teams commemorate their babies' all too brief lives by proudly displaying their names on the kit worn for every match.
Support for Black communities
Support for South Asian communities
Baby loss affects all communities and here at Sands we recognise the need for greater engagement and tailored support for South Asian parents, family members and others to be able to turn to. That is why we have created this dedicated safe, and confidential space for you.
Visit the Support for South Asian communities page to find out more.
Support with complaints, feedback or legal action
Are you thinking about making a complaint, giving feedback or taking legal action?
We are so sorry that you find yourself in need of support in this way. You have the right to complain and feed back to your hospital or healthcare professionals about any aspect of your care. Our guide on 'How to raise concerns, give feedback or make a complaint after a death of a baby' could help you decide how you can do this and the organisations and services who will be able to support you through this difficult time. You may also like to read through our Reviewing Every Baby Death information.
The Sands Bereavement Support Services team is available to support you emotionally throughout your bereavement.
Ways you can help someone whose baby has died
A useful leaflet, downloadable for free
Useful links and organisations
At Sands we support anyone affected by the death of a baby. Our experienced Helpline Team are here to listen and offer support and information without judgement, whenever you need it.
However, you may have a medical or personal issue related to the death of your baby that you would like further information about from another organisation. Here we are pleased to provide links to other websites, in thematic order, which we hope may be useful.