Refurbished Quiet Room officially reopens in Royal-Jubilee Maternity Hospital
12th October 2021
It was obvious from its appearance that those involved in the Quiet Room’s refurbishment were greatly invested in ensuring it is a suitable space for grieving families.
Andrea McKittrick, the Snowdrop Group
The Quiet Room at the Royal-Jubilee Maternity Hospital has been formally reopened after a major refurbishment with the help of Sands NI and The Snowdrop Group.
The reopening is a milestone for the maternity service as the Quiet Room offers an area of peace and reflection where parents and families can spend important time with their baby lost during pregnancy, birth or shortly after birth.
Speaking at the launch, The Snowdrop Group’s Andrea McKittrick, whose daughter Hannah was born asleep in 2002, said: “During our stay in hospital, we as a family used the Quiet Room on a regular basis. The Quiet Room provided us with a welcome opportunity to get away from the hustle and bustle of the maternity ward.
“The Quiet room was invaluable to us, offering space to sit quietly with Hannah and to reflect on the days leading up to and after her birth.
“Perhaps most importantly, it offered us somewhere to spend quality time with Hannah, creating valuable memories of sharing her with family members and friends. Most of the photos we have of Hannah with friends and family were taken here in the Quiet Room. These photos are priceless.”
Andrea’s family donated a beautiful wooden rocking chair to the Quiet Room, with an inscription remembering their daughter Hannah.
“We were advised of the Royal Maternity Hospital’s intention to refurbish the Quiet Room to make it a more suitable environment for grieving parents and families,” added Andrea.
“As a family, we were absolutely delighted to present Hannah’s rocking chair to the Royal Maternity Hospital for use in the Quiet Room. It was obvious from its appearance that those involved in the Quiet Room’s refurbishment were greatly invested in ensuring it is a suitable space for grieving families.”
Speaking at the reopening, Stephen Guy from Sands said: “Sands Northern Ireland have been delighted to be part of this Quiet Room project here at the Royal-Jubilee Maternity Hospital.
“Today is a significant day. This beautifully refurbished room will be used, sadly, on too many occasions, but it will help to create many lasting, wonderful and comforting memories of the short and precious time that parents spend with their baby before they have to say a final goodbye.
“This will improve the already excellent care given by the Royal-Jubilee Maternity Hospital staff.”
Barbara Gergett, Bereavement and Loss Midwife at Belfast Trust, said: “We are very fortunate in the Belfast Trust to have The Snowdrop Group, which is a collaboration between staff and bereaved families who come together to try to enhance and improve the care we give to bereaved families.
“We would like to thank those who were involved, in particular Stephen Guy and Sands who provided the funding.
“I would also like to thank Andrea and Graham McKittrick who donated the beautiful rocking chair in memory of their daughter Hannah, and Karen and Gavin Taggart who donated the beautiful crib in memory of their sons Odhran and Daire, who would have been 13 last year.”