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Held In Our Hearts announce three new board members

Posted: 22nd December 2020

Edinburgh, Scotland – Held In Our Heart’s are pleased to announce the appointment of three new Board members: Ros Lowrie, Frances McGuire, and Board Chairman Mark’s Mackenzie-Smith. The new appointees bring extensive knowledge to the charity, and will be using this expertise to contribute to the continual growth and expansion of Held In Our Hearts into the new year and beyond, whilst sustaining the capability to adapt its services to Covid-19 related conditions and regulations.

Board Chairman, Mark Mackenzie-Smith brings personal experience of Held In Our Hearts services to
his appointeeship:

“I know from personal experience what the work of Held in Our Hearts can mean to parents when their world comes to an abrupt halt. Nicola and her amazing team have a clear vision of where the charity wants to be and I’m excited to be able to contribute to that vision as Chair of the Board of trustees. Yuill will be a hard act to follow but I’m joining a fabulous group of people, trustees and staff who together, will take Held in Our Hearts from strength to strength ensuring there is a better understanding and awareness of our work.”

Upon their appointeeship, Ros Lowrie stated:

“I am delighted to be joining the Board of Held in our Hearts. The charity has gone from strength to strength since using it’s services myself a number of years ago. I am planning on extending my befriending skills and using my third sector life experiences to help continue the growth of the charity.”

Frances McGuire, appointed Chief Midwife at St. John’s hospital in 2015, brings a clinical and compassionate expertise to Held In Our Hearts.

“Throughout my career, care of bereaved families has been an important part of my work and I have  seen so many changes since first qualifying as a midwife in 1986. It is so important for maternity  services to listen to, and work with charities such as Held in Our Hearts if care for bereaved parents is to improve and meet the needs of all bereaved families. I hope that with my background knowledge of maternity services in Lothian that I can contribute to the amazing work that Held in Our Hearts does on a daily basis.”

Held In Our Hearts are continuing efforts to provide baby loss counselling and support to families, and have seen a successful adaptation to the shifted landscape of support services directly linked to the current pandemic and various restrictions, and regulations. During the 2020 period, 72 families were newly referred, and Held In Our Hearts supported around 150 families. Digital and virtual services saw a dramatic increase in use, in order to abide by Covid-19 restrictions, but yet still retain the ability to provide baby loss counselling and support to families.

Overall, there were 1,050 instances of virtual counselling and 700 instances of virtual befriending as well as texts, phone calls and group support. The new Board will ensure these adaptations continue, evolve, and excel, with the predominant focus being on encouraging and supporting the growth and expansion of Held In Our Hearts.

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