Money Raised Pays for Funerals, State-wide Monument and ‘Restore the Shore’
Bradley Beach, NJ -- Thanks to funds raised at an annual family-friendly fundraiser, New Jersey parents grieving the loss of an infant or pregnancy have a support system to help pay for funeral expenses and give emotional assistance.
The New Jersey Chapter of the national TEARS Foundation (www.thetearsfoundation.org) is holding their 4th Annual “Rock and Walk” event on May 19th, 2013, in Bradley Beach, from 10am-2pm. Says Marybeth Stoddart, event co-chair, “All parents get excited about bringing a new baby home, and they are certainly prepared to buy a crib and much-needed baby supplies. But when tragedy unexpectedly strikes, they aren’t prepared to buy a coffin and deal with the intense emotions of an infant or pregnancy loss. It’s traumatizing, yet we’re happy our organization reaches out to help.”
The TEARS Foundation is the only resource of its kind that helps families pay for a baby’s funeral. “We want to give families dignity and choices as they make funeral preparations for their little one,” adds Rivka Milchman, event co-chair. “Funerals are costly and expensive, and they’re not something expectant parents prepare for. No one ever plans for the death of a baby,” adds Milchman.
The TEARS Foundation has chapters and walks in eight states. The New Jersey event promises to be a fun-filled day with music, entertainment for the kids, great food, an uplifting butterfly release, special prizes and giveaways. Registration for the Bradley Beach Rock & Walk is just $5 for those who register before April 15th, and after that it’s just $10 per person (children 12 and under are free). Registrants can opt to pay $20 per walker and they will receive a free, personalized T-shirt! The NJ Chapter of the TEARS Foundation will donate $1 from every registration towards ‘Restore the Shore’ efforts.
The 2013 Rock & Walk has three goals: inspiring hope, honoring children lost, and celebrating lives. Families across that state that have lost a child are invited, and while we walk together, we can find hope. Participants can walk solo, or form a team, and the walk takes place on the boardwalk (starting point: the Bradley Beach Gazebo, at 5th and Ocean Avenues).
There will also be a path lined with hand-crafted memorial butterflies, each with a name of a child loved and honored. The heart of the walk is to let bereaved families know they are not alone, to raise funds to support these families, and to build community awareness about pregnancy and infant loss.
“Nationwide, The TEARS Foundation has helped more than 1000 families. The NJ Chapter has only been around for four years and we’ve already assisted more than 130 families with funeral care and bereavement services. We know we can reach more families in the Garden State through community events like the Rock & Walk,” says Renee Walsh, event co-chair.
“We’re also glad, that through last year’s fundraising efforts, we were able to secure a private space in Manahawkin, NJ, for the nation’s second Angel of Hope monument. We can’t wait to tell more families about this amazing space for reflection and remembrance,” adds Margaret Pylon, the event’s fourth co-chair.
Through the generosity of Dignity Memorial, among the nation’s largest funeral, cremation and cemetery service providers, the NJ Angel of Hope stone monument will be located at Thos. L. Shinn Funeral Home, 10 Hilliard Drive, Manahawkin, NJ 08050. The community will be invited to join us at the unveiling ceremony on Sunday, October 13, 2013, as we honor precious babies; but , more importantly, it will provide parents with an actual – yet tranquil – place for anyone to come and remember the life of a precious baby lost. There will be forms available at the walk for parents looking to have a baby’s name etched on the NJ Angel of Hope monument.
To walk as an individual or to form a team for the 2013 Rock & Walk in Bradley Beach, NJ, please go to this link: http://www.firstgiving/tears.
Who: NJ Chapter of the TEARS Foundation
What: “Rock & Walk” Charity Event for NJ Families After Infant Loss
Where: Bradley Beach, New Jersey (Meet at Gazebo, 5th and Ocean Avenues)
When: May 19, 2013, 10am-2pm