Fundraiser for Dorset County Hospital opens room named in her honour

CELEBRATION: Clare Stokes, fifth from the left, with her husband Richard and son Otis open the new low-risk birth room with maternity staff and hospital chief executive Jean O’Callaghan, centre

CELEBRATION: Clare Stokes, fifth from the left, with her husband Richard and son Otis open the new low-risk birth room with maternity staff and hospital chief executive Jean O’Callaghan, centre

First published in News

A MUM who raised nearly £3,000 for Dorset County Hospital’s maternity ward has officially opened a room named in her honour.

Clare Stokes, from Dorchester, raised the funds for the new low-risk birth room through a number of community events including a charity football match at the Avenue Stadium in the county town and a street fair in Antelope Walk.

The new room, which will be called the Stokes Suite in recognition of Clare’s support, is design to offer a comforting setting for women who are having low-risk births.

The aims is to provide a less clinical environment for women who would like the feel of a home birth with the reassurance of being in a hospital.

The room includes a new birthing couch from the National Childbirth Trust, a birthing mat and stool, and a comfortable bean bag for the mum’s partner to use.

Clare set about fundraising for the ward after describing her youngest son Otis as a ‘miracle’ baby when he was born in June of 2012 after she and husband Richard had lost two babies.

She said: “All my children have been born here and sadly we lost two babies during pregnancy.

“The maternity staff have been so incredibly supportive – we just wanted to give something back.

Midwife Jane Hall said: “We are so grateful to Clare and her family for raising the money for the room.

“It’s something we’ve wanted to provide for a long time and it will be of great benefit to so many women.

“We eventually hope to be able to set up another room like this.”

Maternity staff would also like to thank the Friends of Dorset County Hospital for providing the curtains for the room, colleague and photographer Helen Burgess for donating some prints and local artist Sue Peake for donating a painting.

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