AFTER the heartbreaking stillbirth of their baby, Alex and Michael Lenehan are aiming to make the experience a little bit easier for grieving parents.
The Garvoc couple is crowd-sourcing funds to raise $5000 to purchase a cuddle cot in memory of their son, Joshua Paul, who was stillborn on May 18.
“I was diagnosed with premature rupture of membranes,” Mrs Lenehan said.
“It is fairly rare. Joshua was delivered at 23 weeks’ gestation stillborn. At the hospital the team were fantastic. The nurses and midwives were great.”
The cot looks similar to a traditional Moses basket but includes a cooling system and is designed to fit within a small cot.
The system allows for babies who have died to remain longer with their families after their death.
“I wish I had a cuddle cot to keep Joshua in my room longer and treasure more time with him, instead of worrying about him having to go back into the ‘cooler’,” Mrs Lenehan said.
Although she had planned to donate the cuddle cot to South West Healthcare, it will now be given to Pregnancy Loss Australia (PLA) which has helped the couple with the loss of their son.
PLA helps bereaved families who suffer the loss of a baby from miscarriage, stillbirth and neonatal loss through support programs and professional support services.
“Originally I was going to donate it to the hospital but they don’t have space for a second one,” Mrs Lenehan said.
“In this incredibly difficult time, PLA has helped me through some of the dark days and still continue to do so.”
Mrs Lenehan said the cot would be sent by courier across Australia to grieving families.
“I did a bit of research and found out the cots were available directly to families from PLA,” she said.
“Having gone through the loss of our precious son Joshua, I know the support grieving families need and I would like to do my bit to help other families, who might not have access to a cot through their hospital.”
Mrs Lenehan said all donations were gratefully received and appreciated. Joshua’s due date was on September 13 and his mother said she was considering organising a fund-raising event to mark the date.
To donate visit placuddlecot.gofundraise.com.au/page/JoshuaPaul