East Kent Sands Charity


Due to concerns about the spread of coronavirus we have taken the difficult decision to cancel our monthly support groups meetings in Ashford and Margate, as well as any face to face contacts, for the time being.  Sands is also cancelling all events and activities across the country until the end of May.

Support remains available from our local volunteers on 07547 195 791 or 0788 967 463.

If you need bereavement support you can also contact the Sands national helpline on 0808 164 3332 or helpline@sands.org.uk. For other ways we offer support, including our Online Community and our Bereavement Support App, visit https://sands.org.uk/support.

For information about coronavirus, see sands.org.uk/coronavirus

The Ashford Baby Memorial Garden remains open and we expect it will stay open as part of the Council's Memorial Gardens, a large open space, but obviously we will follow any advice from Ashford Council.  Please note that on occasions the small entrance by the College has been locked, but the main entrances on Church Road, Station Road and Victoria Road remain open.  Until further notice, all fundraising and awareness events and meetings will be cancelled.  This will impact on our local fundraising considerable.

If you have any questions about East Kent Sands, or the Ashford Baby Garden, please feel free to contact Chris on 01233 643 976.






Many of you will have seen the reports (January 2020) about baby deaths at the East Kent NHS Foundation Trust.  It hasn’t been easy reading this news and Sands is here for anyone who feels they need support.

Our free Helpline is available on 0808 164 3332 or helpline@sands.org.uk from 9.30am to 5.30pm Monday to Friday and 9.30am to 9.30pm Tuesday and Thursday evenings.

In addition, East Kent Sands volunteers run support meetings in Margate and Ashford and Margate as well as providing telephone and other support to anyone affected by the death of a baby. 

Sands’ Chief Executive Clea Harmer has spoken out today on the impact on families and urgent need for action.

Clea said: “It is dreadful to hear of failings in yet another NHS Trust leaving families devastated by the deaths of their babies. Put simply, these avoidable deaths should not be happening.

“The UK should be one of the safest places in the world in which to have a baby. Sadly, this is a stark reminder that we are currently a long way from that reality.

“Time and again we hear of parents’ concerns not being listened to or acted upon, or that national guidance is still not being followed. If this new Government is serious about meeting the national ambition to halve the rate of stillbirths, neonatal and maternal deaths in England by 2025 they must ensure that all Trusts are supported to provide mothers and babies with the safest care possible.

“Maternity safety must continue be a top priority for the NHS with lessons learned and Trusts empowered to act upon them, so that we do not keep hearing about the same failings and most importantly, more babies’ lives are saved.”

Thank you for visiting our web site.  Whether you have lost a baby, or are a friend or family member, a midwife or other professional person, or someone that is just curious, we hope you will find it useful. 

We are a small group of volunteers (we have no paid staff) who are very busy indeed supporting bereaved families, working with Ashford and Margate hospitals, providing training and equipment, and raising awaress of the fact that every ninety minutes, somewhere in the UK a baby dies. 

We have links to the support available from our volunteers and from the national helpline, information on some of our activities, updates on events and fundraising/awareness raising activities, and links to many other organisations.  The web site is something which will we hope grow over time so please return to the site every now and then to see what has changed.  

And do let us have feedback, please, as we are keen to make the site as helpful and as friendly as we possibly can.

Thank you.

East Kent Sands News

We have been very busy in December raising money and awareness of baby loss.

From January 2020 our Margate Support Group will be meeting at a new venue - St John's Church and Community Centre, Victoria Road, Margate CT9 1LN from 7.45 to

This year our Wave of Light will be on Sunday to make it more accessible and to avoid some of the challenges of increasing numbers in the dark.  Further details

With some 620,000 members in the UK we realised that Scouting would have a significant number of people who had been affected by the death of a baby, either directly or indirectly.  Three of our Sands volunteers, who are also Scout volunteers decided to create some guidance for those adult leaders on how to support other adults and young people following the death of a baby.

East Kent Sands was delighted to play a part in the National Citizen Service 2019 Summer Programme when we

Our latest update is now available. 

East Kent showed its skills at Lions' Quiz

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anyone affected by the death of a baby



Open to anyone affected by the loss of a baby, no matter when.  Family and friends welcome.



Open to anyone affected by the loss of a baby, no matter when. Family and friends welcome.

Wednesday, Jul 15

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