Families release butterflies in memory of babies who have died

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Dozens of butterflies were released at Dunollie Castle on Saturday in memory of babies who have died.

A short ceremony took place before the release, which featured songs by the Ladies Sequence Choir and poetry from bereaved parents.

Susan Simpson of Simba said: ‘We have 19 adults and 12 children joining the SiMBA Team this year to release butterflies in a beautiful act of remembrance for babies gone too soon.

‘The families gather together to remember their children, some lost to miscarriage, some to stillbirth, some to neonatal death and some who passed in infancy.’

Speaking at the event, Susan said: ‘We understand that each of us has experience the pain of missing our child’s first words, first steps, first day at school, so many firsts.

‘We recogise the strength that each bereaved heart has, and we are determined that we will acknowledge our beautiful children.’

Through out this participants were busy holding and warming up their butterflies to wake them from hibernation.

Following the ceremony, it was time to release the painted ladies and tortoiseshell butterflies.

Some flew to the foliage surrounding Dunollie Museum, Castle and Grounds straight away, while others took longer to get going.

The butterflies were bred especially for Simba in sterile conditions by an award-winning entomologist.

Susan said: ‘They have no impact on native species and will acclimatise and settle for a period in these gorgeous gardens. They will feed, mate, and eventually migrate to South Africa – such strength in such a wee fragile creature.

‘That, to me, speaks about the fragility and strength in each one of us.’

Simba was established in 2005 and supports parents who have been affected by the loss of a baby.