A CHARITY founder from Stratford has received an MBE at Buckingham Palace.
Zoe Clark-Coates, the founder of bereavement support charity, the Mariposa Trust, received her MBE at a ceremony at the Palace at the weekend.
The announcement of the award was made as part of the Queen’s Birthday Honours 2021, but the ceremony was delayed due to the pandemic.
Zoe founded the charity, more widely known by the name ‘Saying Goodbye’, in 2012 alongside her husband Andy, following the tragic personal loss of five babies during pregnancy. The organisation focused on providing bereavement support and services of remembrance for anyone affected by baby loss, at any stage of pregnancy, at birth or in infancy, whether the loss be recent or historic.
In addition, the charity campaigned for change to bereavement care and developed free resources to better support anyone going through baby loss.
In the ensuing years, Zoe has led the charity to develop six support divisions, built a bereavement support service accessed by over 50,000 people each week, and brought many high-profile figures including Nigella Lawson, Jools Oliver, Kate Beckinsale and Professor Lord Winston on board as ambassadors of the charity.
Her outstanding work has previously been recognised with a Prime Ministers’ Points of Light Award, Influencer of the Year
Award, and British Citizen Award for services to healthcare.
In recent years, Zoe has become better known as a leading grief expert and as the author of best-selling books on baby loss and grief, with ‘Saying Goodbye’, ‘The Baby Loss Guide’, ‘Beyond Goodbye’ and her newest book ‘Pregnancy After Loss’, becoming essential resources for bereaved people globally.
Zoe’s has made hundreds of appearances on TV for BBC TV, ITV, BBC Radio, Global Radio, Talk Radio, and numerous print media. Zoe’s own TV talk show ‘Soul Tears’ has run for three seasons, interviewing celebrities and well-known figures about their journeys of grief, loss and the transformational power of hope.
While in 2018, Zoe was appointed as the co-chair of the ‘National Pregnancy Loss Review’ on behalf of the Secretary of State for Health. In this role, Zoe is advising on bereavement care for all pre 24-week gestational loss, and developing new guidance and pathways for improved care across the NHS, introducing certification and much more.
Zoe said: “I am deeply honoured to have been nominated for the award and for the Queen to bestow this honour on me. To attend the ceremony yesterday and have my MBE presented by Her Royal Highness, the Princess Royal was wonderful, and it will be a
day I will always remember. To receive it during Baby Loss Awareness Week, makes it even more special.”
More information on the Mariposa Trust can be found at www.sayinggoodbye.org