A special refrigerated 'cuddle cot' is now available in Barra.


The cot which has a cooled mattress allows bereaved parents of new born babies to spend more time with their child.


It helps parents grieve and to say their last goodbyes as they can pick up  their baby, to cuddle and kiss them.


The cuddle cot was donated from fundraising by Leigh and Adam who lost their little girl, Madelyn Jess Gordon,, in August 2015.


They learnt about the work of charity SiMBA which was was founded in response to the needs of families affected by the loss of a baby.

Leigh said: “We were very lucky to have spent two days with Madelyn while she was being cared for in the neonatal unit, but having the use of the cuddle cot in the family room also meant we did not have to say goodbye as soon as her treatment was withdrawn.


“We could spend more time with her, without tubes and wires in the way of her little face.”


Leigh added: “We learned a lot about the work SiMBA does and were sad to find out that not everyone would have had the same chance as us, since not every maternity unit has a cuddle cot. It was important for us to try and raise the money to donate one in Madelyn's name as every bereaved parent should have the same opportunity to spend as much time with their baby as they'd like to.”


Catherine Macdonald, NHS Western Isles Maternity Ward Manager, said: “Through SiMBA’s generosity, memory boxes are provided to parents as a treasure chest of mementos such as “the blanket of love”, birth acknowledgement certificate, hand and foot prints and photographs.


“We are very fortunate that national donations towards SiMBA equipment are used throughout the UK, which has enabled our islands to benefit and subsequently help local families affected by the tragic loss of their baby.


We already have equipment located within Western Isles Hospital to assist families in Lewis and Harris, with further equipment to be made available to assist families in the Uists. We are also grateful to SiMBA for the training, resources and support provided within the Western Isles with staff and families alike."


The local support group for bereaved families 'Sèimh' pledge to undertake a fundraising event each year or make a donation to contribute to the work of Simba.


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