My name is Sarah McVeigh, I am the Managing Director of Angel Gowns for Australian Angel Babies.
I am 32 years old and a mother of three premature babies, Jade born at 34.5 weeks, Oscar was born at 27 weeks I am pleased to say he is doing tremendous now he has been weened off his oxygen support and now 3 years old, and Tiana who was born at 34.5 weeks is now 5 yrs old.
After having my son at 27 weeks and enduring the long hard road of 107 days in NICU I saw how this service was needed in Australia, after talking to mothers and families that had lost their baby. Angel Gowns seeded in the USA, by various voluntary groups who create beautiful gowns for babies that have passed away. I contacted Michelle in the USA who kindly shared her patterns so we could carry on this great work and offer this gift to grieving families in Australia.
Hundreds of beautiful women all over Australia have donated their stunning wedding dresses to be transformed into Angel Gowns. A single wedding dress can make anywhere from 12-50 Angel Gowns for Angel Babies in Australian Hospitals. The more the word is spread the more wedding dress donations…..The more dresses donated…The more dresses can be transformed into Angel Gowns for those Angel Babies who have grown their wings.
Some people think that it is not polite to talk about the loss of a baby or clothing to be worn in the baby’s funeral, I have found the opposite, families want to talk about their experience, and they want to remember their baby. Our gowns are about giving something beautiful, that’s all.
I now have 200 helper volunteers all around Australia performing roles such as State Managers, Area representatives, jewellery makers, seamstresses and crocheter/knitters; I could not do this without all these beautiful ladies and also the lovely ladies who donate their dresses to our much needed service.
Angel Gowns For Australian Babies is a voluntary by-donation group, any monies that are donated are spent on further materials to make Angel Gowns.
An Angel Gown is given to the families whom have lost their baby, to dress them in the best possible gown they could wear, as a wedding dress is the most beautiful gown a woman would wear, yes they are funerary gowns. We understand that some babies are so small that no clothes would fit them, so we create gowns to fit all sizes, for a baby that is unable to be dressed due to being fragile we have created a wrap to cocoon this precious soul for the parents and families. Each gown package comes with angel wrap or angel gown, beanie, booties, nappy, blanket and a keepsake for families.
We do offer urgent gowns which is requested by a close family member or friend who knows of a Baby who will be growing their wings as well. The turn around is in the mail within 24 hours and off to hospital of choice.
At this time I am spending nearly every second of my time when I am not looking after the kids/family etc but it is all 100 percent worth it. We have received over 6000 wedding gowns so far and many more on their way.
I would like to thank you for your ongoing support and love xx