We are delighted that broadcaster and journalist Genelle Aldred has agreed to become an Ambassador for Sands.
Genelle has worked as a newsreader for ITN, ITV and the BBC for over a decade, communicating both the toughest and also the most joyful news. She has helped to break the silence around baby loss for many years, following the death of her daughter Sade-Rose at 40 weeks and 10 days when Genelle was just 19-years old. A loss brought on by not being listened to by healthcare professionals, and compounded by poor care.
Genelle is passionate about helping others find their way through grief and wants to help people think about how they can be advocates for mums during pregnancy and especially labour.
"I know how it feels to lose something and it's not your fault and there’s nothing you can do. I wracked my brain for years about anything I could have done differently. Ultimately I had no power and listened to the people who I thought knew best. I had a Sands pack then and it helped me to remember Sade.
"That was many years ago and still there are too many babies dying every day. Many of these deaths are preventable and more must be done to save babies’ lives. I want to help anyone who is supporting someone in pregnancy to understand how to be an advocate for them especially in the last couple of weeks. I also want to highlight the disproportionate loss of babies to BAME parents and I want to break the taboo around child loss.
"If a partner, parent or sibling passes everyone speaks about it. If a baby or child dies there’s not that same freedom. Talking not only helps those who grieve it can help to prevent it from happening to others. I want to play my part and stand with others because I know how it feels to have all your hopes and dreams gone in a heartbeat."
Genelle Aldred, Sands Ambassador
You can watch a video of Genelle talking very honestly, with her friend Lisa, who runs the Youtube Channel Teddy Has Two Mams with her wife Lynsey below:
Genelle talks about her own experience of stillbirth and why it is so important that healthcare professionals listen to women when they have concerns about their pregnancy.