Stephanie Cole, an ASAP Coalition member is a contender for the MASK (Mothers Awareness On Schoolaged Kids) Unity Award. Please vote for Stephanie Cole to win the Unity Award and shatter the silence surrounding stillbirth and infant death.
There is just one week left before voting closes and a winner is chosen. We can win this with your help!!! Vote and share every day from now until March 1st. Thank you for your support! http://www.maskmatters.org/stephanie-cole
About Stephanie Cole
She is the proud mama of four amazing and beautiful children. Her first child, Madeline Jonna, died one week after her due date in January 2007. Since that difficult time, she has brought three wonderful little boys into the world and though they have added more color and joy to her life than she could ever have imagined was possible, her heart still aches for the daughter she never brought home.
Since Madeline’s death Stephanie has been dedicated to honoring her daughter’s short but precious life by working to improve the way stillbirths are handled at the hospital and in the community. Ms. Cole created Sweet Pea Project, a nonprofit organization that offers comfort, support and gentle guidance to families who have experienced the death of a baby, in January 2009. The organization has grown immensely since then. The Sweet Pea Project has donated nearly 4,500 baby blankets to hospitals across the country, so that bereaved parents have something soft and sacred to swaddle their baby in when they hold her/him for the first and only time. They have also donated copies of Stephanie Cole’s book, Still., which was published in 2010. Since the books release, over 1,500 copies have been donated to hospitals, bereavement organizations and individuals all across the world. It Stephanie’s hope that the book, which is a portrait of the first year of her life after Madeline’s death told through her journal entries, poetry and artwork, will help other bereaved mothers feel less alone in their grief. Sweet Pea Project also holds several community events, such as our annual children’s picnic and annual remembrance gathering, which offers families a chance to come together with others who understand and honor the children they so deeply love and desperately miss. Of course none of this will ever make the death of a baby okay, but it is Stephanie’s hope that it will help to create a more supportive and compassionate community for the families left behind.
And for Stephanie Cole, working with Sweet Pea Project has given her an opportunity to continue parenting her daughter by mothering her memory. To most people Stephanie is Ben, Nathaniel & Ethan’s mom, because they see her running around with them every day. But because of the work with Sweet Pea Project, there are people across the world who know her as Madeline’s mom. For that, she is so very grateful.