Oxford maternity support worker wins national award for bereavement care 

on 10 November 2021 RCM Annual Midwifery Awards MSWs - Maternity Support Workers Bereavement Care

A maternity support worker (MSW) from Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust has won a national award for her work supporting bereaved parents. Candice Noonan received the WaterWipes Midwives Maternity Support Worker of the Year award at the Royal College of Midwives (RCM) from presenter and musician Mylene Klass at the RCM annual awards on 27 October.  

After receiving her award, Candice said “I am so honoured to be recognised in this way, and a huge congratulations to all the nominees – what an achievement for us all. I never realised how at one you could be with a job, until now. I don’t think there are any words to explain how it feels to win such a prestigious award, for just doing what you truly love. 

“I’d like to thank everyone who believes in me and of course the RCM. I want to dedicate this award to all the families I have met throughout my journey so far.” 

Candice works in the maternity service bereavement team at the trust as a specialist bereavement MSW. Nominating her for these awards colleagues praised her for making a difference in these women’s lives at such a devastating time and for going above and beyond to meet their needs, and also for the efforts she makes to support other staff.  

RCM’s Chief Executive, Gill Walton said: “What really shines through with Candice is how much she really cares for the women, their partners and families. She is supporting them through an incredibly difficult period and her efforts and willingness to go that extra mile are making that process better. She also works to keep driving changes and improvements to make the service even better. Nothing can take away the pain of losing a baby, but people like Candice can and do help to make that grieving process a little easier. She is a truly outstanding MSW and richly deserves this award and the praise being heaped upon her.” 

Candice has worked hard to make bereavement care even better at the trust. She established close links with various charities and works with them to improve care and the resources available for women and their partners. She also supports the team with audits and statistics which are helping to improve services. Her role also extends after the parents leave the unit, through the trust’s Rainbow Clinic which supports parents after discharge. Her colleagues say parents really value seeing her friendly face again and have appreciated the continuity she provides for them. 

Commenting, Ailbhe OBriain, HCP Marketing Manager at WaterWipes sponsors of this Award said: “Maternity Support Worker’s (MSW’s) provide invaluable care and support, particularly in areas where resources can be limited. The work the MSW’s carry out can make all the difference to the experience Mum’s have before, during and after childbirth. This year’s winner, Candice Noonan, has demonstrated exception support in the most challenging area in her role as bereavement specialist MSL at Oxford University Hospital NHS Foundation Trust. Sincere congratulations to Candice on a job well done with true care and compassion. 

“WaterWipes was delighted to support this award again and acknowledge the immense support Candice has provided. WaterWipes would also like to take this opportunity to acknowledge the great work all MSW’s deliver across the length and breadth of the country. 


To contact the RCM Media Office call 020 7312 3456, or email [email protected] 

Notes to editor 

For more information on the RCM awards and the full list of winners visit RCM Awards 2021 

The Royal College of Midwives (RCM) is the only trade union and professional association dedicated to serving midwifery and the whole midwifery team. We provide workplace advice and support, professional and clinical guidance, and information, and learning opportunities with our broad range of events, conferences, and online resources. For more information visit the RCM website RCM | A professional organisation and trade union dedicated to serving the whole midwifery team.