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Lost Hopes & Dreams - New Jersey's Perinatal Bereavement Training Program


Three Little Birds Perinatal is honored to be invited to collaborate and participate in Lost Hopes and Dreams, New Jersey's Statewide Perinatal Bereavement Training Program, hosted by the Southern New Jersey Perinatal Cooperative, Partnership for Maternal and Child Health of Northern NJ and the Central Jersey Family Health Consortium.


The training was meticulously organized to equip participants with the necessary knowledge and skills to assist parents that are navigating the tragic terrain of perinatal loss. Attendees gained invaluable insights and practical tools to better support and care for parents during one of the most challenging times of their lives. Among the key objectives of the training were:


  • Define the Five Types of Perinatal Loss: Participants gained a deep understanding of the various types of perinatal loss, enabling them to tailor their support to the specific needs of each family and their loss.

  • Implement Effective Communication Skills: Effective verbal and non-verbal communication are paramount when supporting grieving parents and family members. Attendees learned practical communication strategies to foster empathy, understanding, and trust while providing clear and direct support and information.

  • Navigate Ethical Dilemmas in the NICU: The training delved into the complex ethical dilemmas that can arise in cases of infant loss in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU), equipping participants with ethical frameworks to provide care and support.

  • Best Practices for Supporting Pregnancy After Loss: Supporting families through subsequent pregnancies following a loss requires delicate care. Participants learned best practices for providing emotional support and guidance during these times of both anxiety and joy.

  • Memory Making for Families: Creating lasting memories can provide solace to grieving parents. The training covered the importance of photography and other memory-making options and provided practical steps for healthcare professionals to facilitate this process. Additionally, cultural and religious death rituals and considerations are also explored.

  • Essential Components of Discharge Education: Educating parents regarding critical elements of emotional and physical care following discharge from the hospital is vital for their healing as well as decreasing maternal morbidity and mortality. Attendees were equipped with the essential components of discharge education in the face of perinatal loss to ensure families feel informed and supported.


By the end of the training, participants emerged with enhanced capabilities and a renewed commitment to providing compassionate care to parents and families navigating perinatal loss. This training is provided through a grant from the NJ Department of Health Stillbirth Awareness Campaign and is being hosted at various locations throughout the State, including Hopewell, Hackensack, North Brunswick, Edison and Voorhees, NJ.


For more information on how to attend one of the remaining training sessions, please contact Kathy Donaldson at KDonaldson@CJFHC.org.


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