This first image is a throwback to November of 2015, when a spray-painted line and foundation for the central statue were the only hints of change to come. Since that time, Wings of Hope has been blessed by the generosity of community members. We have been able to grow from those stark white lines to the beautiful walkway, carving, benches, and surrounding trees and flowers.
More than that, though, we have been able to keep growing in community awareness and involvement. But we still have so far to go.
Have you visited the Wings of Hope site yet? When you go, you'll see pavers that honor the life of a child. You'll see pavers given in memory of family members. You'll see pavers engraved with messages of support. And you will also see many more pavers that are yet to be engraved.
The Paver Project
We need your help to fill these pavers with messages and names. The Paver Project is our summer push to get as many pavers engraved as possible by fall. Doing so does two very important things:
Get as many people together as possible to help get these pavers engraved! Below are just a few ways to join the Paver Project this summer.
As we get ready for another Evening of Remembrance and a second Design & Wine fundraiser, we want to take this time to thank everyone for the continued support of Wings of Hope. We have come so far since those painted outlines on the grass and dreams on the dry erase board in our committee meeting.
We still have much to do - and more goals to reach. This includes approximately $3000 to finish paying for the memorial, the annual costs for engraved markers with the month and year of the common burial (with one marker between two burial plots), monthly expenses for printing brochures and other materials, expenses associated with each Evening of Remembrance, candlelight vigil, and other events, and goals and projects to further the mission of Wings of Hope. These include things like donations of Cuddle Cots to the local hospitals - so families can have as much time saying hello to their little ones before they have to say a final good-bye.
How can you help Wings of Hope?
There are several ways you can help us meet our needs and reach our goals.
As the weather gets warmer and we prepare for our next Evening of Remembrance, we wanted to take a moment to share information about the pavers at the Wings of Hope memorial site.
There is one word we keep hearing from people who visit the Wings of Hope memorial site - peaceful. We invite you to visit the memorial site - a truly peaceful place for reflection - and experience this for yourself. Even if you have not experienced pregnancy loss, come and read the names and inscriptions on the pavers and take in the beauty of the central monument. There is something profound about reading the sentiments and feeling the heartache - and hope.
The new benches, installed by Tom Miller and available through him for engraving, give you the perfect perch for taking a few minutes to pray, remember, or just be still. Visit with by yourself, with a group of friends, or family - you're all welcome during the regular cemetery hours (and you can drive right to the monument and park on the road in front of it), from sunrise to sunset.
Last night when I stopped by the Wings of Hope memorial site to check on the new fence, I was met with a bittersweet surprise. The first of the pavers had been engraved, and among them were my own and those of my family. As I circled the walkway, reading the names, sentiments, and remembrances, the tears fell as I was struck with a mix of emotions.
Names of babies loved and lost. Some lost decades ago and some achingly recently. Words of comfort from community members. Yet these words on the pavers are more than just carvings in stone. They are steps in healing for women, for families, and for a community as we come together to find a way to support each other in pregnancy loss. They are reminders that we are not alone, and that the lives of our babies lost in pregnancy are still cherished.
- Chris O., Wings of Hope Chair
[NOTES: There are more pavers completed than pictured, and there are still pavers to be engraved. If you would like to know if your paver has been engraved, please send me a note with the description of the paver - I have pictures of all completed pavers. We will update you here when all of the orders have been engraved. There are also still pavers available for engraving. All proceeds go to pay for the central monument, which we hope to have installed next week, and for the costs related to Wings of Hope services.]
The members of our committee have all been on the journey of pregnancy loss, but in different ways. Learn more about why they are all so passionate about bringing awareness and comfort to families who lose a child during pregnancy.