Waterside woman joins Life After Loss charity campaign

Julie-Ann Coll with her children Kerri-Lynn, Mackenzie and Robbie at Belfast Castle. Photo: Stephen Coll
Julie-Ann Coll with her children Kerri-Lynn, Mackenzie and Robbie at Belfast Castle. Photo: Stephen Coll

A Waterside woman who has been studying with the charity Life After Loss, is hoping to set up a support in the city.

Julie-Ann Coll, who herself has experienced the loss of a child, said she had intended trying to do something, but up to this point “other stuff had got in the way”.

“I have always wanted to do something. My wee boy would have been 10 this year if he had lived. I was prompted by my own situation to do a course with Life After Loss, which will qualify me to relate to other people who have suffered the same kind of loss,” she said.

Life After Loss is a Lisburn-based charity, with sub-offices at Antrim and Newtownabbey, but there is no support group west of the River Bann.

“There is nothing formal by way of support by the charity in the Derry area and my aim is to have a group in Derry which can support people here,” she said.

This week marks ‘Baby Awareness Week’ and Julie-Ann is keen to hear from anyone who would like to see the formation of a support group for mothers and fathers who have suffered the loss of a child.

“Anyone who feels they would like to help form a group in the city can contact me on 07702008383,” said Julie-Ann.

On Sunday as part of Baby Awareness Week Julie-Ann and her three children, Kerri-Lynn, Mackenzie and Robbie, as well as her husband, Stephen, travelled to Belfast to take part in the Life After Loss balloon release.

“There was a lovely atmosphere. Although we were all strangers, there was a feeling of unity and support,” she said.