Snowdrop event to help grieving families

Michelle Boland

Bereaved families who have lost a child are invited to a special event at Blackpool’s Stanley Park.

The 16th annual Snowdrop Gathering will have specially chosen music and poems followed by a candle ceremony to help parents, carers and siblings feel less alone with their grief.

Organiser, Michelle Boland, Paediatric Bereavement Support Nurse Specialist for Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, said: “The Gathering has meant such a lot to people who have attended previous events. For those families who do not have a place to go to remember their child it is of particular significance.”

This year’s event will take place on Saturday, February 25 at Stanley Park Visitors Centre. The ceremony starts at 11am and doors to the centre will open at 10.30am.

Parents and NHS volunteers will be taking part in poem recitals and local singer, Chloeann Foster, will perform a number of songs including Over the Rainbow and One Moment in Time

Following the service and candle lighting, led by Hospital Chaplin, Jonathan Sewell, those who attend will be given a balloon with a butterfly shaped message tag which they can fill out. Families will also be presented with a beautiful ceramic snowdrop plaque keepsake specially made by one of the grieving mums.

The event is more poignant for Michelle as it is likely to be her last Snowdrop Gathering as organiser. “I have been involved in 16 gatherings so it will be hard to leave the families behind, but knowing that in some way I have helped them will be special.”

The event, which is supported by Donna’s Dream House, is non-religious and open to anyone who has lost a child from the age of one month to 18 years.

Anyone wanting more information about the event or the Snowdrop Centre is asked to call Michelle Boland on 0792 0138112.

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