EACH year in Australia more than 3500 families experience the unexpected death of a baby.
To coincide with Red Nose Day tomorrow, SIDS and Kids is reminding parents of the simple measures they can take to follow safe sleeping practices.
The annual event, held to raise awareness and money for research into stillbirth and sudden unexpeced death in infancy, is also focusing on the grief experienced by fathers.
The organisation encourages fathers, grandfathers and all men affected by the death of a baby to “take their grief off the shelf.”
Channel Ten presenter Stephen Quartermain has joined SIDS and Kids to promote the need for men to be supported after losing a child.
SIDS for Kids NSW and Victoria chief executive officer Karen Passey said public awareness and fundraising through Red Nose Day was essential for the organisation to continue its work.
“Since 1988, SIDS and Kids has helped save thousands of babies’ lives through education and community awareness programs with $15 million going into research and the possible causes of unexplained infant death, stillbirth, neonatal death and Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS),” she said.
Ms Passey said the organisation received only 4 per cent government funding and relied on fundraising to sustain its support and research work.
She estimated that since 1990, 7500 babies’ lives had been saved through education programs.
A free nation-wide bereavement service is offered to families who have experienced the unexpected death of a child.
Red Nose Day merchandise is available from Big W, Best and Less, Chemist Warehouse, and the community health department at Orange hospital.
SIDS and Kids safe sleeping:
Sleep baby on the back from birth, not on the tummy or side.
Sleep baby with head and face uncovered
Keep baby smoke free before birth and after
Provide a safe sleeping environment night and day
Sleep baby in their own safe sleeping place in the same room as an adult care-giver for the first six to twelve months.
Breastfeed your baby