The Sudden Death of a Child
Losing a baby or a child of any age is the most traumatic event a parent can go through. When the death is sudden and unexpected, feelings of shock, disbelief, guilt, anxiety and sadness are experienced.
FirstLight believes that all families should have access to the support and information they need when a child grieves or when a child dies. Through understanding their grieving process and receiving help in dealing with bereavement from appropriately trained professionals, families can learn to live with their grief and begin rebuilding their lives.
That is why FirstLight are here
- Our services are provided to all families who have lost a child up to the age of 12 years
- All our services are provided nationwide and are free of charge
- Please refer all suddenly bereaved families immediately to FirstLight
- To offer support to families bereaved by the sudden unexpected and often unexplained death of an infant or young child up to the age of 12 years and to others affected by it.
- To provide crisis intervention to crèches, schools and whoever is affected by the death of a child.
- To promote research into, and provide information on Sudden Infant Death Syndrome to families, professionals, the media and the public at large;
- Promoting research into the causes and prevention of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome;
- To raise funds to provide the above
Professional FirstLight Supports
- National Local helpline: 1850 391 391
- Befriending Service:
- Home visits
- Remembrance Services:
- Training Video for Professional
- Crisis Intervention
- Counselling for individuals and couples:
- Residential Support Groups
- Family Support Weekends
- Counselling for children
- Book of Remembrance
- Annual Newsletters
- Crisis support
- Safe Sleep for your baby leaflet
- Sudden Infant Death Model of Care
- Model of Care Manual provides guidelines to assist these professionals in caring for bereaved families.
- Training Video for Professionals
- “Sudden Infant Death Syndrome, a Co-ordinated approach for professionals” This video is suitable for in-service training.
- Speakers for professional and community groups
- Seminars and information meetings
- Information Hotline for Professionals
- An information hotline for Professionals (available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week) is available on 087-2423777.
- ISIDA mailing list
The National Paediatric Mortality Register
The National Paediatric Mortality Register formerly known as the National Sudden Infant Death Register was established by FirstLight in 1992 and is funded by the Department of Health and Children. The aim of the Register is to ascertain accurate, up-to-date information on sudden, unexpected, often unexplained deaths in infants and young children in the Republic of Ireland. Based on that information, the Register carries out research and educational projects.
Register personnel are members of the Executive Committees of the Global Strategy Task Force for SIDS research.
Professional role – as soon as a sudden, unexpected death of an infant or young child which is not immediately explainable occurs, professionals (medical, social, legal) throughout the country are requested to advise the Register.
Services offered by the National Paediatric Mortality Register:
- Epidemiology and Service Evaluation research projects.
- Annual Reports on Sudden Infant Death in the Republic of Ireland.
- Information regarding resource material for professionals.
4 North Brunswick Street
Office number: 01-8732711
National Local Helpline: 1850 391 391
National Paediatric Mortality Register
The Children’s University Hospital,
Office number: 01-8788455
How Can You Help?
FirstLight offers support and information, and promotes research into the sudden, unexpected, often unexplained deaths of infants and young children. With your continued support we can continue to provide our services for free across Ireland.