How we can help?
No one can be prepared for the level of grief that follows the death of a baby. Families’ dreams for a future with their child are lost and their heartbreak can be immeasurable. Parents may wonder if their feelings are normal and how long they will last. They may also need to make some difficult decisions at a time of great distress.
Sands understands what it is like, because we have been through this experience ourselves.
Sands is available to offer immediate support and quality information whenever a baby has died – whether through miscarriage, termination due to medical reasons, stillbirth, newborn death or other pregnancy loss. We are here to comfort parents and offer hope for the future.
Our services are not just for those touched by the recent death of a baby. We also offer support prior to the death of a baby, to bereaved parents who are feeling anxious throughout a subsequent pregnancy, as well as those who were unable to express their grief when their baby died many years ago.
We also offer support to family and friends, who may not know what to say or do. Sands offers ongoing support for all, in the hope that no one will ever have to say “if only we had known help was available”.
We work in partnership with obstetricians, midwives, nurses and other professionals, often advising on best practice in the care of bereaved families. Sands has services in Queensland, Victoria, South Australia and Western Australia, and we have parent supporters in every state, including regional areas.
Providing access to specially trained parent supporters is a key Sands service. All parent supporters are volunteers who have experienced the loss of their baby and are using their understanding to help others through their journey. Society often underestimates the profound grief that can be felt by parents whose baby has died before, during or soon after birth. Grief can involve all sorts of emotions and thoughts, many of which are not considered socially acceptable.
When the reasons behind these strong reactions are not properly understood or acknowledged, parents can be left feeling isolated and confused. Talking freely with parent supporters who have lived through the experience can help to reassure bereaved parents that they are not alone and their reactions are normal. Sands also recognises that this model of caring and non-judgemental peer support can help to minimise grief-related problems later on
Sands is a national not-for-profit organisation that offers support when a baby dies before, during or soon after birth. “After the death of my baby, it was a comfort to speak to someone who truly understood the depths of my grief – because they had been there before and come out the other side.” – Sarah
Sands offers a variety of services that accommodate the different experiences and needs of bereaved parents, their families, friends and the wider community.
Talk with a parent supporter on our national telephone support line on 1300 072 637
Our parent supporters are also available via email firstname.lastname@example.org
Online live chat support
Online support from a parent support is available through live chat. Details can be found at www.sands.org.au/online-support
Men’s support service
Support service where you can speak with a male parent supporter. We also offer a face to face support group specifically for men. Details can be found at www.sands.org.au/mens-support-services
Held in metropolitan and regional areas, these local support groups are run by, and for bereaved parents.
Held annually, these non-denominational services provide an opportunity for family and friends to celebrate the lives of babies who have died.
Factsheets and other information
We also have a collection of factsheets to help those affected by pregnancy and infant loss. These can be found on our website These factsheets include topics such as memory making, how to speak to bereaved parents, early pregnancy loss, stillbirth & newborn death and how to provide support for other children, grandparents and partner’s. Visit www.sands.org.au
Sands provides free education sessions in hospitals, clinics, universities and other organisations.