A North East landmark is being decorated in ribbons this week to remember babies taken too soon.
Saltburn Pier, on Teesside, will be covered by ribbons with messages from parents to their babies who have died with the aim of raising awareness of the impact of baby loss. The show of support is being held as part of Baby Loss Awareness Week, which runs from Monday 9 October to Sunday 15 October.
Families across Teesside are encouraged to place a ribbon, which they arewelcome to write their baby’s name on, or a message showing support for the families affected by loss, which will be tied to the pier.
The display has been organised as part of Redcar and Cleveland’s Family Hubs in collaboration with Leo’s, the local authority’s commissioned service which runs a specialist perinatal baby loss service.
Families who are affected by miscarriages, termination, stillbirth or neonatal loss are able to access dedicated care and support from the team.
Lottie King, CEO of Leo's Neonatal Charity, said: “This week brings a huge amount of emotions for so many families in so many ways.
"We are really grateful to the Family Hubs Team, the Local Authority and the businesses of Saltburn for supporting the baby loss community and offering families a place to remember their babies.“We hope families will find comfort in tying the ribbons on the pier, and being able to have some time to think of their little one by the sea.
"We also hope that those affected by loss who feel isolated or alone, realise there’s a whole community of us out there waiting with open arms to walk alongside them.”
Local shops including Lilian Daph, Real Meals, Surf’s Up and Brambles will be stocking special biodegradable ribbons and fabric pens for those who wish to contribute to the display.
The Family Hubs, which function to support both children and parents, relaunched last month after receiving a £2.6 million funding boost.
Luke Myer, cabinet member for children at Redcar & Cleveland Borough Council, said: “It’s so important that we do anything we can to support these families and this excellent service, provided by such dedicated people, is a key way we can improve our offer.
"Thank you to everyone involved and if you’re a parent who needs this support pleasedo not hesitate to get in touch with our Family Hubs.”
The ribbons will be on display until Monday 16 October.