The Angel Gowns project is a charitable organization that helps parents of newborns and children who have lost their lives. Its mission is to provide beautiful handmade garments to every family in need. These garments are made by volunteers using donated wedding dresses. A single wedding gown can make as many as 10 beautiful little gowns. The project also accepts monetary donations to help with shipping.
During the donation process, the donor can follow their wedding dress to the developing country it’s donated to. This way, they can virtually meet the seamstress who made the gown. And if they’re not able to follow the gown, they can give a few back to the program, too. In addition to helping the women, this program helps families heal. It also helps women find purpose, boost their confidence, and become empowered.
Angel gowns can be purchased from a local hospital, through a local bereavement group, or directly from organizations like Angel Gowns. Families can also find support through organizations like Share, International Stillbirth Association, HAND, and First Candle. Other nonprofit organizations that provide grief counseling and support include Bereaved Parent and Miscarriage Hurts.
While there’s no way to completely alleviate the grief of a grieving family, angel gowns can help them cope with the loss. One such mother, Justine Deslauriers, lost her baby at 20 weeks and later wore her angel gown to help her through her hospital stay. The gown made her feel more secure and supported, which was especially helpful.
While infant loss is a sensitive topic, the organizations that make angel gowns support bereaved families and raise awareness. Founder Neal’s goal is to provide support services to bereaved families and to remove the secrecy surrounding this tragic situation. In the process, she hopes to help families heal from their loss.
In addition to her work with angel gowns, Heather Gibson speaks to raise awareness about the issue of pregnancy loss and the need for awareness. This work allows Heather to share her most difficult experience with others and honor her daughter in the process. Although it was difficult for her to recover from Kennedy’s death, she has found new life through sewing angel gowns for other families.