Special cot to help families through a traumatic time


Bass Coast Health (BCH) was this week fortunate to receive a Cuddle Cot from Melbourne family Kit and Blake Norrish, who raise funds to enable the charity Bears of Hope to supply Cuddle Cots to hospitals.

The Norrish family was inspired to give the cot after experiencing the trauma of a stillborn baby. They have given six cots to Victorian hospitals to date.

The Cuddle Cot is a cooling system designed to fit within a small cot, enabling families to spend every moment with their baby before saying goodbye.

BCH Midwifery Unit Manager Relle McMillin said the Cuddle Cot enables families to have “as normal memories as possible” after experiencing a stillbirth.

“We had an older system here and are so grateful to Kit, Blake and Bears of Hope for this new Cuddle Cot that will help families through such a trying time,” she said.

“The Cuddle Cot allows a family to cuddle, kiss, bath and dress their baby, and even take their baby home.”

Kit and Blake were patients at a Melbourne hospital when their son Arlo was stillborn in January this year. By using a Cuddle Cot, the couple was able to spend five days with Arlo.

Drawing on their experience, they have since raised nearly $40,000 to enable Bears of Hope to extend the availability of Cuddle Cots to more hospitals.

This week, they travelled to Wonthaggi to generously share their story.

“Giving Cuddle Cots to hospitals is just a representation of how much Arlo was loved – something good has come out of what we’ve been through,” Kit said.

“If we can’t do it with Arlo, we will do it for Arlo.”

Blake said the Cuddle Cots are labelled with Arlo’s name and date of birth to not only preserve his memory, but to also encourage people to talk about stillbirth and to help them to cope with the emotional toll.

“If we do not talk about it, then no-one will,” he said.

To donate to Kit and Blake’s fundraising campaign, go to: bit.ly/46vFIF6