BEREAVEMENT SUPPORT

HOW WE CAN HELP

Bereavement support and guidance, research opportunities and community events. For families of any child, aged 1-18, who has died suddenly with no immediately apparent cause. 

SUPPORT

If your child died unexpectedly and without reason, we are so sorry for your loss. We can help. SUDC UK is a registered charity, founded and run by bereaved parents, who understand how you feel. Tragically, seemingly healthy children can die suddenly, leaving families devastated. SUDC UK is here to support you with information, expertise and to connect you with other families. You are not alone.

Support is available immediately after sudden child loss or at any stage in the future. The cause of death does not need to be concluded to access our services. 

Please click here to complete a short form and we will contact you soon.

SUDC UK collaborates with the SUDC Foundation to provide comprehensive services at no cost to families. SUDC Foundation is a global organisation, providing specialist support to over 1,500 families worldwide, including many in the UK. The SUDC Foundation and SUDC UK are experienced in the unique challenges and unanswered questions following SUDC. 

SUDC UK directly offers 1-1 guidance through the child death process, and can discuss options for emotional care for the whole family, medical screening, genetic testing and research opportunities. Our team is warm, professional and you decide which services you’d like to use. We do not provide regular 1-1 sessions with a trained counsellor or urgent crisis support. 

PARENT TESTIMONIAL –

“A story I wish with all my heart we were not part of, but thankfully we found this amazing charity to help families like us feel less isolated in our heartbreaking journey.”

An SUDC Parent

RESEARCH

SUDC UK is dedicated to SUDC research and helping families understand the options for further investigation. We proactively help families seek answers and help to create a future where we can predict and prevent these tragic, unexplained deaths.

SUDC UK supports research in 3 ways:

  • Funds medical research grants to approved projects.
  • Collaborates with organisations to optimise data collection and encourage SUDC research.
  • Guidance and referrals to SUDC research programmes, with the aim of finding answers for families and preventing future deaths.

“Enrolling in research has provided us with some answers about what might have happened to Yianni. This information has allowed us to do everything we can to protect his siblings and our wider family from a health perspective.” 

Helen, Yianni’s Mum and SUDC Co-founder and Trustee 

Read the ground-breaking National Child Mortality Database report, co-authored by SUDC UK. It is the first national report to review SUDC deaths and identify themes and recommendations.

The largest global database of SUDC cases is the SUDC Registry and Research Collaborative. The purpose of this project is to increase the understanding of the characteristics, circumstances, medical histories and pathologies of children from 11 months to 18 years who have died suddenly and unexpectedly, and sometimes without explanation. The SUDCRRC analyses these cases to understand risk factors and causes and to develop preventative measures.

By helping bring together these rare cases both nationally and globally, SUDC UK hopes to support grieving families with a greater understanding of their child’s death and support medical research efforts.

COMMUNITY

SUDC UK is proud to offer families fully funded special events and opportunities to connect with other parents.

  • Calm, restorative retreats for bereaved parents. The day or weekend retreats provide time and space to meet, listen and share with others who have also suddenly lost a child. It is guided by caring and supportive experts, namely our patron, Jenni Thomas OBE (founder of Child Bereavement UK) and Nicki Whitworth (founder of SLOW). 
  • Family Days
  • Venues include ZSL Whipsnade Zoo and Yorkshire Wildlife Park.
  • SUDC Awareness month
  • Every March our supporters come together to help spread the word and many join activities including ‘Strides for SUDC Awareness’.
  • Stars for our Children
  • Virtual Memory Garden
  • Secure online SUDC Foundation community and support group sessions for familes

These SUDC UK Autumn Retreats are based at a beautiful location in Buckinghamshire. The day or weekend retreats provide time and space to meet, listen and share with others who have also suddenly lost a child. They are guided by caring and supportive experts, namely our patron, Jenni Thomas OBE (founder of Child Bereavement UK) and Nicki Whitworth (founder of SLOW) and held in memory of Autumn Garwood. Please contact us to find out more about scheduled events.

LISTENING

Jenni Thomas and The Angus Lawson Memorial Trust - talks about Child Bereavement

SUDC UK Patron, Jenni Thomas OBE has created a series of podcasts about Child Bereavement. These are available from all podcast providers or directly from Jenni’s website. Topics include Sudden Loss and may be of interest. We are grateful for Jenni’s ongoing support of SUDC UK. Contact us for other podcast suggestions

OTHER SUPPORT SERVICES 

Other Support Organisations highlighted by SUDC UK:

  • Some of our families find one-to-one or group support for themselves, or their children, through larger organisations such as Child Bereavement UK and Cruse Bereavement Care or through a local children’s hospice.
  • The Compassionate Friends is an organisation supporting bereaved parents and their families. They run retreats across the country and offer group and peer support.
  • StrongMen is an national organisation that strives to specifically support and connect bereaved men.
  • The Lullaby Trust is a UK charity that supports families who have been affected by the sudden and unexpected death of a baby or young child. Working with the NHS, it runs a national health-visitor led service for bereaved parents, called the Care of Next Infant (CONI) programme, which supports families before and after the birth of a new baby. This service can sometimes be offered to families who have had a young child die suddenly and unexpectedly.
  • The Scottish Cot Death Trust provides a wide range of support for anyone affected by a sudden unexpected death in infancy (SUDI) in Scotland.  Like the Lullaby Trust, it also offers a program to support parents with pregnancy and new babies following child bereavement.
  • 2 Wish provides support in Wales and some areas of England for anyone affected by the sudden and unexpected death of a child or young adult
  • SADS UK Charity provides support to anyone affected by Sudden Arrhythmic Death. SADS UK, offers counselling as well as bereavement retreats to support those affected.
  • 4 Louis offers bereavement memory boxes to parents who have lost a child as well as community support for families.
  • The Good Grief Trust and At A Loss are umbrella organisations that can help you find support in your local area. At SUDC UK, we often uses these resources when helping families.