KIND councillors have decided to donate almost £10,000 of public funds to help provide a memorial to remember cherished babies who have passed away.

Members of the policy and resources committee agreed to top up a funding campaign to plant a SiMBA charity 'Tree of Tranquillity' in Gourock Park.

Local parents, families and friends have already raised £9,699 towards the cost.

Councillor Stephen McCabe said: "It is a very fitting way to remember these babies.

"Gourock Park provides the very best setting for this tree.

"I think we should make a contribution to landscaping for up to £10,000.

"It will be such a great asset to the community, especially to those who have been bereaved."

Speaking after the meeting Mr McCabe said he was grateful to his committee colleagues for supporting the initiative.

He added: "Losing a baby is a terrible tragedy.

"Having solid memories of a life, however brief, is a vital part of the healing process.

"The council is glad to be able to help make this project a reality.”

The Tree of Tranquility will be a life sized copper sculpture where each leaf honours a baby who has died.

It is not just for newly bereaved but also for those who lost their baby at a time when there was little or no recognition of their baby’s existence.

The tree will grow as individually engraved leaves are added, each in memory of a baby who will never be forgotten.

There will also be a bespoke bench to encourage visitors to spend time at the site.

Local mum Karyn Jenkins is the driving force behind the project.

The Tele told last year how she lost her daughter, Sophie Louise, during the 22nd week of her pregnancy.

Karyn said: “I am absolutely delighted to hear that the council is helping to pay towards the final cost of our Inverclyde Tree of Tranquillity.

"It’s so nice to know that both the community and the council have helped with the tree and have worked together.

“I am so proud of everyone involved and so grateful for every donation that we received.

"For the community to have raised over half of the amount required in less than a year is such an amazing achievement and just shows how important the tree is going to be for so many Inverclyde families.”

SiMBA is charity which responds to the needs of those affected by the loss of a baby. In addition to installing memorial trees, it helps families to create memories of their baby by donating memory boxes to hospitals and individuals and offering support groups.

Sara Fitzsimmons chief executive, said: "The site in Gourock Park offers the perfect location for a SiMBA Tree of Tranquillity, giving those affected by the loss of a baby the opportunity to honour their baby in a simple, gentle and positive way.

"I would like to thank Inverclyde Council and everyone who has fundraised and donated to support this project.”