With the help of her community, a dedicated mother has helped to give bereaved families the gift of time

The CuddleCot gives bereaved families the gift of time to create precious memories, and make necessary arrangements after the death of a baby. Unlike cold cots, families can hold their baby using the CuddleCot.

The importance of time is internationally encouraged by bereavement teams and academics in continuing bonds after grief, and can help to give some comfort to grieving families during such a difficult time.

Mother of four, Olivia Cadwallader raised money for a CuddleCot in memory of her much loved daughter Amelia. Olivia was 36 weeks pregnant when she stopped feeling any movement from baby Amelia. After ringing the hospital and being given a scan, Olivia was told that Amelia had sadly died.

When Olivia gave birth to Amelia at the South Mead Hospital in Bristol, she was offered a CuddleCot and free memory box from 4Louis. The CuddleCot gave Olivia and her family the time to make arrangements and keep Amelia close to them.

“It gave us a couple of days extra with Amelia to make memories,” said Olivia.

She said: “It was heartbreaking because we had everything ready for her arrival.

“I kept thinking she would prove everybody wrong and she would come out screaming like every baby does, but there was no sound. It was hard.”

Olivia raised funds for baby loss charity Sands at Amelia’s funeral, and later took part in the Sands 310,000 step walking challenge with Max, Nathan and Maisie, Amelia’s siblings.

Knowing she wanted to do more to help other bereaved families, Olivia contacted 4Louis who provided the memory box at the hospital, to see what more she could do to help.

Olivia rallied her friends and family to join her and her eldest son Nathan in a sponsored walk, from Bristol to Clevedon, to raise money for a CuddleCot.

“I did say it was going to take roughly about five to six hours, ten and a half hours later we made it back to Bristol,” she said.

“But it was a fun day. Everyone was aching, everyone was brilliant.”

Olivia heard from friends she hadn’t seen in years, all who wanted to do their bit. From sharing her fundraising plans on social media, to attending in person. What’s clear is that baby loss touches everyones lives, and the support and community spirit around this event is truly so impactful.

The sponsored walk was a huge success, and Olivia as able to place a CuddleCot and specially adapted Moses basket at the St Michaels Hospital in Bristol in February 2024.

When Olivia sadly needed to use the CuddleCot with Amelia, she didn’t have access to the Schnuggle Moses basket, so when she saw it was now an option she ensured that families were offered the Schnuggle Moses basket with the CuddleCot, so they didn’t have to use the “scary” and “morbid” metal trolleys often used with traditional cold cots.

Olivia featured on BBC Radio Bristol and spoke to the team about Amelia and the CuddleCot.

Olivia plans to help fundraise for further CuddleCots and memory boxes for bereaved parents with the help of 4Louis. 4Louis support families through miscarriage, stillbirth and child loss. They fundraise for CuddleCots, CuddleBlankets and Bereavement Boxes

Lead bereavement midwife at the hospital, Elle Franks, said it means families can hold and bathe their babies.“Families can hug their babies and spend time with them, with them looking very similar to how they were at birth” she said.

Olivia said the CuddleCot gave her and other family members time to “create memories” with Amelia.

“All family came in to see her… and we had her hand prints and feet prints done, it was nice,” she said.

“I think about her every day. She’s forever missed and forever loved.”

A 4Louis memory box for bereaved parents

If you or someone you know would like to talk to a bereavement counsellor for free, or for further resources, please visit: cuddlecot.com/grieving

Do you have a fundraising story to share? Email: yourstories@cuddlecot.com

Posted in

Supporting families during the experience of miscarriage

Miscarriage is sadly a common occurrence, affecting an estimated 20-25% of all pregnancies. It encompasses early pregnancy loss, which can occur through miscarriage, ectopic pregnancy, or termination of pregnancy.

10 Ways you can help a bereaved family

While no one can erase the pain and sadness of loss, the knowledge that others care can offer comfort and contribute to healing.

The Importance of language and sensitive communication

As health professionals we are in a privileged position to be providing bereavement care for families at a devastating and vulnerable time, the care we provide has a long lasting impact on the family…

With the help of their community Michael and Mariah Cason raised an incredible $7,345 in memory of their son Reagan James Cason

Michael and Mariah Cason, are parents of to their precious son, Reagan James Cason. Reagan was born on February 25th, 2023 at 6:30am and after his parents went into an appointment and heard the words that no parent can be prepared for, “We’re sorry. There is no heartbeat.” “Our son was a perfect 7lbs and…

Couple donate CuddleCot to SSM Health

There are tragically an estimated 6,400 newborn deaths every day, and sadly not every family is given the choice to use a CuddleCot. Regrettably not every hospital has a CuddleCot, and tragically if the one they have is in use, then another grieving family on the same ward will not get the chance to spend…

My daughter, Thea, died in February 2019. 

We spoke to Gabriella Walker, Mother to Thea who sadly died in February 2019 about how she practices self care as she prepares herself for Mothers Day, birthdays and anniversaries.

“This will be our fifth Mother’s Day without her. We were lucky that, having taken the difficult but what turned out to be best decision to accept a referral to a hospice years earlier, we had had access to a CuddleBlanket on the night that she died. The CuddleBlanket keeps the body of a child who dies cool so that you can spend time with them after they have died and slowly get used to your new reality.”

With the help of her community, a dedicated mother has helped to give bereaved families the gift of time

The CuddleCot gives bereaved families the gift of time to create precious memories, and make necessary arrangements after the death of a baby. Unlike cold cots, families can hold their baby using the CuddleCot. The importance of time is internationally encouraged by bereavement teams and academics in continuing bonds after grief, and can help to…

“The thought of these mothers having an opportunity to keep their infants at the bedside as long as they want was incredible” – Heather Rodriguez, RNC

The importance of healthcare professionals voices is of vital importance to delivering quality bereavement care and raising awareness of the support available to bereaved families. The CuddleCot gives bereaved families the gift of time to create precious memories, and make necessary arrangements after the death of a baby. The importance of time is internationally encouraged…

Baby loss certificates introduced in UK for babies less than 24 weeks thanks to campaigners

From today, bereaved parents who lose a baby before 24 weeks of pregnancy in the UK can now receive a certificate in recognition of their loss from www.gov.uk. This vital step towards improving bereavement care in the UK is a step in the right direction in recognising the loss of life and parents grief. The…

Community Spotlight: The Maxwell George Foundation

“The Maxwell George Fleming Foundation’s mission is to provide hospitals in Canada with CuddleCot’s™, which allow bereaved families experiencing the loss of an infant the ability to spend more physical time with their child and to ensure all hospitals in Canada have access to a CuddleCot™ “.  Jessica Fleming, Maxwell’s mum, explained the inspiration behind the…

Leave a Comment