HB&O’s most recent donation, worth £10,895.18, has been awarded to The Lily Mae Foundation to fund their important work including their memory box project to support bereaved families after a baby loss.
The Lily Mae Foundation was established in 2012 by Ryan Jackson and Amy Jackson who lost their baby, Lily Mae, to stillbirth at 37 weeks in 2010. The charity was set up in memory of her and provides support and information to bereaved parents and families who have lost their babies following a stillbirth, neonatal death, miscarriage or medical termination.
The donation from HB&O, administered by the Heart of England Community Foundation, is supporting the charity’s work, including their memory boxes, counselling, and workshops. The Heart of England Community Foundation and HB&O visited The Lily Mae Foundation to hear and see the impact of their work.
Ryan Jackson, Founder and Managing Director at The Lily Mae Foundation shared:
“Every day in the UK around 13 babies die before, during or soon after birth. The impact on the family is devastating, because we’ve been through this experience first-hand, we wanted to support families through one of the most difficult times in their lives. When we left the hospital following the birth of Lily Mae, we left with nothing but a broken heart and our small, but precious memories, that’s why we have chosen to fund Memory Boxes as our priority.
“The boxes allow the parents to collect memories and precious items and store them. They include vouchers for jewellery engraving, candles, clay print kit, ink print kit, photo frames, books, a teddy. By providing parents with a starting point and ideas we will hopefully make the hard task of memory making that bit easier and give them something beautiful to look back on and remember their child by.”
The charity also hires employees with lived experience to provide counselling for their service users. Geoff Heaps, Chair at The Lily Mae Foundation said:
“Working with people who’ve been through the same experience is so important, anyone can get a counsellor, but you can’t guarantee they’ve had lived experience, but Ryan and Amy do which is incredibly significant.
“We also offer group support for people who don’t want to have one-to-one sessions, as well as golf sessions specifically to support and encourage men to talk about their loss.”
Mark Ashfield, Managing Director at HB&O Accountants reflected on his visit:
“Over the past few years HB&O have been fundraising to donate money to a local charity and it was decided by the team that The Lily Mae Foundation would be receiving our funds. The work they do and the support they continue to provide is outstanding and it’s great to know that our money will go towards helping more people during an unthinkably difficult time in their lives.
“After visiting the Foundation, we were able to see how the charity constantly looks for new ways to help families in all different kinds of circumstances, from supporting siblings after perinatal loss, their specialist groups for Dads and their training packages for professionals – they put a great deal of thought into everything they do.”