MacConvilles has worked on many interesting projects over the years, but their most recent surveying role was possibly the most worthwhile. Working alongside Novus contractors, we helped to put together the plans for a new bereavement care facility.
The project has been installed at the Royal Sussex County Hospital in Brighton and is a seperate living suite for parents who have lost a child before or during labour, giving them the time and space they require to come to terms with the death. The new unit includes a bed and bathroom and has been created in conjunction with children’s charities Abigail’s Footsteps and Oscar’s Wish.
The Oscar’s Wish Foundation was founded in 2015 to help families experiencing the loss of a baby and the team worked hard to raise the funds required to furnish the suite, making it a calming, private environment for those that might need it.
Abigail’s Footsteps was set up in 2010 after the founders lost a child of their own. They wanted to create a charity that would help bereaved parents, filling the gaps in the service currently offered. They are working to improve training for healthcare professionals and improve amenities available. This bereavement suite was made possible when MacConvilles introduced the charity to a competition run by Novus, who wanted to support community projects. Abigail’s Footsteps was a winning entrant and the contractor’s team of six delivered the project. In total, £20,000 was set to be spent on this and five other deserving community projects to mark the company’s fifth birthday.
“As part of the judging process we received a lot of worthy nominations,” said Kevin Rhone, Novus, “But the idea for the suite, submitted by Abigail’s Footsteps, stood out from the very beginning.
“Everyone involved in the selection was moved by the cause and the work the charity does. Abigail’s Footsteps is a fantastic organisation offering support to parents of stillborn babies and this project will offer such parents facilities that will be vital for years to come.”
As well as MacConvilles and Novus, the charities worked closely with midwives and parents to ensure the facility was well thought out and designed.
Before work had begun, Hayley Stevenson, labour ward lead and specialist bereavement midwife at the Royal Sussex County Hospital, said: “There is a real and pressing need for this suite. We started fundraising with Abigail’s Footsteps and Oscar’s Wish some time ago to try and realise the plans. Now, thanks to the Novus competition, we will have the facility ready earlier than anyone could have hoped.”
MacConvilles is delighted to have been a part of such an important initiative and hopes the new suite will help provide a little relief in a difficult time.