The Pinks N Blues CIC

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Up and down the country, there are thousands of people doing good deeds every day, and we decided to celebrate the great work that charities undergo with a regular feature on Tuesdays, to tie-in with #CharityTuesday on Twitter. This week, we caught up with Catherine from The Pinks N Blues CIC to find out more about them.

Where are you based and what geographical areas do you support people in?
Our office is based at the Custard Factory, Digbeth, Birmingham, we currently hold support groups at Birmingham Heartlands Hospital and Birmingham Women’s Hospital each month.

Anyone is welcome to come to our groups there are no restrictions on geography or which hospital you come under. We regularly have people coming from across the West Midlands.

We also offer 1-2-1 support, either face to face, via email, skype and/or telephone which means we can offer support further afield and support people globally as well as regionally.

How do you support people?
We currently offer two pregnancy loss groups, we ensure a safe and supportive environment to all who wish to come
– the group is for individuals, couples, family and friends. People can attend for as long as they wish, can come, have a break and come back (this helps those who need the support around anniversary dates), a loss in pregnancy could have happened years ago and some find they need to talk to others so also attend.

We use the term pregnancy loss as miscarriage holds a stereotype of a loss before 12 weeks which is ‘just like a heavy period’ the reality is that it’s not, along with this we wanted to be inclusive of those who experienced other types of loss such as molar pregnancies, ectopic pregnancies, blighted ovum and losses in the 2nd trimester of pregnancy.

We also offer 1-2-1 support, either face to face, via email, skype and/or telephone which means we can offer support further afield and support people globally as well as regionally.

We also now offer a Pregnant After Loss Group where those who wish to come can talk and share their anxieties and offer peer support to each other as they navigate through what can be a difficult time.

During October which is Baby Loss Awareness Month we coordinate awareness events, host a Wave of Light bringing people together to remember their forever babies.

How did the charity come to be founded?
Following my own experience of loss, which were extremely traumatic and life threatening, I found that I needed something local, someone who got what I had been through and started as a volunteer with the Miscarriage Association. I soon found that others needed more than just a group each month and decided to set up the Pinks N Blues CIC as a legacy to the memory of our 6 little ones.

How many people do you have working at the charity?
At this time there is only me working full-time and we have 6 volunteers who support us in delivering events and fundraising.

We are a social enterprise rather than a charity, we chose this route as we did not have £5,000 to become a charity and could not find enough people to act as trustees. This means we have to income generate which we try to do through training and study days for all Healthcare Practitioners. At the moment we are just managing to raise enough funds to pay for our premises and running the groups, no one takes an income from the organisation.

How can people support you?
We accept any support gratefully, anyone who can help with marketing, web design, fundraising, being a part of our advisory group, fundraising, CSR, promoting us and sharing our posts on Social Media. We are currently looking for volunteers who have experienced pregnancy loss who are a year past their loss and who have either finished having their families or having at least a year break before trying again to help us set up other groups, full training and support will be given.

Have you faced any challenges along the way?
We are constantly being challenged especially financially to promote and publicise our work, to offer groups and support as at the moment I am the only person, though we are working with some of our volunteers to be able to offer groups and support.

Building relationships with hospitals and CCG’s has been a hard slog, especially to get them to see our value and understand the impact of pregnancy loss on every aspect of a person’s life.

Raising awareness of pregnancy loss and its impact has also been a challenge especially as the media always want a ‘happy ever after’ when this is not a reality for a number of people and when they are going through a loss and feeling hopeless the ‘happy ever after’ can feel so unachievable.

Do you have any charity events coming up and where can people find out about these events?
We are hoping to deliver a number of events throughout October for Baby Loss Awareness Month and details of any events can be found on our website www.thepinksnblues.co.uk

Is there any advice you could give to other charities?
It can take over a year for your work to make an impact and begin to bear fruit, it can be extremely disheartening at times, surround yourself with others who have a can do attitude. The #MatExp has given me amazing support both virtually and personally, there is no hierarchy we are all driven by the need to bring about change, and I know this last year wouldn’t have had the impact it has on raising awareness without them.

You can find out more about The Pinks N Blues CIC below:
Website
Facebook (The Pinks N Blues CIC)

Facebook page (Birmingham Miscarriage Support Groups)
Instagram
Twitter
Email: 
enquiry@thepinksnblues.co.uk
Telephone: 07595 840775