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Remembering those who were born to soon, in silence or died far too early

October 19, 2018   ·   0 Comments

By Wendy Gabrek


Matthews House Hospice (MHH) hosted its first candle lighting ceremony as part of the International Wave of Light on October 15 at the new Centre for Excellence on Wellington Street, Alliston.

As October 15 is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Day, MHH volunteers welcomed the PAIL Network (Pregnancy and Infant Loss) from Sunnybrook Hospital, and honoured the families who are bereaved with the loss of a little one.

“As part of a compassionate community we want to acknowledge the babies who were born to soon, in silence or died far too early,” said Cathy Marengeur, Bereavement Coordinator, Matthews House Hospice. “We lit a candle in their honour, spoke their names and kept their memory alive.”

The initial hope was to host the ceremony in the new garden space, however windy weather drew the group inside.

An information session on the formation of a local PAIL networking group will be held in Alliston on Saturday, November 3, from 10–11 a.m. at Matthews House Hospice.

Pregnancy and Infant Loss (PAIL) Network provides free bereavement support to families who have experienced the loss of a pregnancy at any stage, or the death of their baby, up to 12 months of age.

“We welcome any families who have suffered a pregnancy or infant death to join with others who share in their grief. PAIL Network is very proud to be able to offer this free service and we are grateful to the many volunteers around the province who share their hearts with bereaved families, like their own,” said Marengeur. “We are currently have volunteer opportunities for people who are approximately two years past their bereavement date and are looking for meaningful ways to offer their support to others. We are actively training peer supporters for bereavement groups and events, phone support, and for private online support groups.”

To register, email for the registration link. The registration password is: volunteer.

For more information about being a peer supporter, please visit our website at or email

For more information about Matthews House Hospice contact Cathy Marengeur at Matthews House Hospice, 131 Wellington St. E. Alliston, by calling 705-435-7218 or email


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