Remember My Baby Charity - Why I'm a Volunteer Photographer
Baby Loss Awareness Week takes place from 9 to 15 October every year. It's an opportunity for parents, their families and friends to acknowledge and remember their precious babies who have died. It is led by Sands in collaboration with 70 charities in the UK.
As part of Baby Loss Awareness week, I'll be sharing my story about why I volunteer as a photographer for Remember My Baby, a UK based registered charity who have professional photographers volunteering their photography services for the benefit of UK parents losing their baby before, during or shortly after birth.
When a couple is given the devastating news that their pregnancy is ending in the
most unexpected way, the last thing on their mind is professional portraiture. That’s
where the RMB organisation comes in.
RMB has a growing network of professional photographers throughout the UK who
are willing to use their skills and give up their time to help bereaved families capture
a lasting and tangible memory of their baby at no cost to the parents or to the
hospital or birth centre.
As a Newborn Photographer, I had been aware of Remember My Baby for a while. Many of my photographer friends had become volunteers or digital retouchers so I was intrigued to find out more. Initially I put it on hold in my head, thinking I just didn't have the time to commit to something new. I'd just started my new business and my youngest daughter was still at home with me for the majority of the week. My plan had been to wait until she was in school full time and I'd have a little more flexibility. However, earlier this year at a Photography Trade Show I had an opportunity to talk to some of the RMB volunteers face to face. Chatting to the team really helped me to understand how they worked as team across the country to support as many hospitals as possible. If I could help with a just a few shoots a year that would be enough.
My mind was fairly set on volunteering from the start (must be the Irish streak in me!). But still, I made sure my family were comfortable with it and understood why I wanted to do this.
To many it may seem like situation you don't want to put yourself in the middle of. Talking it through with my nearest and dearest, many of them expressed their concerns about the impact it may have on me emotionally but supported me non the less. For me, it was the final piece of a jigsaw - something that suited me and my skills perfectly. All babies are so precious, and I see that in my work every day. Whilst I have never suffered the loss of a child personally, as I'm sure will be the case for you too, sadly many of my friends and family have. This was my chance to help in the best way I know how.
By offering sensitive and beautiful remembrance photography we hope that the small gift we can provide to families will bring some comfort in the days, months and many, many years to come.
Our baby remembrance photography service is entirely funded through voluntary donations. I'm hugely proud to be a volunteer for RMB, if you would like to know more about what we do, to volunteer yourself, or to find out how to support us visit; https://www.remembermybaby.org.uk/donate/
One of my fellow friends and photographers, Louise Ferguson is a Newborn Photographer and Volunteer photographer for Remember My Baby in the Sussex area. Louise will be at The Sussex Baby Show this weekend, if you're in the area why not pop along and stop by for a chat! Her blog this week is all about what to expect from her Newborn Photoshoots.