Who We Are
Amanda Bowles - President / Co-Founder
I am a wife & mum to 2 boys and a baby girl on earth and an angel in Heaven ~Jesse Buttons~ born 19th January 2006. After losing ~Jesse~ I resigned from a successful career with Flight Centre as a Manager & Area Leader. Through Bears Of Hope I have found a passion to help others & educate the community in the impact that a loss through pregnancy or infancy has on a family. I am thrilled to manage the program with Toni in honour of my son and have began studies in Professional Counselling to extend that professional support through the program after graduation.May you always have hope in your heart.
Toni Tattis - Vice-President / Co-Founder
A Mother, Author and qualified Early Childhood Teacher. After three years of falling pregnant naturally and losing all seven babies, five from miscarriages - Rhys(11wks), Jordyn (9wks), twins Cooper & Kaitlyn (7wks), and James (5wks) and identical twins-Jacinta & Madelin after birth at 24 weeks, (due to PROM from Twin to Twin Transfusion Syndrome), I now have 2 rainbow girls, a nine year old and one year old. Starting Bears Of Hope has allowed me to acknowledge and honour each of my babies in a precious and memorable way that has contributed incredibly to my healing. It has also created an inner strength and the ability to never give up hope, aiding in my desire to help others. I have drawn great comfort from the many beautiful connections I've made over the years. I can only wish that those who are sadly touched by our program, that you too never give up hope.
Kylie Raftery - Board Member
Wife and mum to ~Sophie Cleo~ born 32 weeks on 14th December 2008. After losing ~Sophie~ I gave up my corporate job of 10 years and have now started working with my husband. Our loss helped us to focus on what we consider the important things in life. Bears of Hope have been a tremendous help to my husband and I since we lost out little girl. We have also seen the positive impact it has made on other families we have met who have also lost precious children. Our ‘Bluey’ bear remains with us as a reminder of Sophie. I am honoured and privileged to be a part of such a wonderful program.
Kylie Pace - Secretary
I am a wife to a wonderful husband and mum to 2 precious Angel Boys. Jesse Jay born at 16 weeks gestation on 16.06.2007 & Jamie Vic born at 21 weeks on 18.06.2008. The amazing support I have found through Bears Of Hope has played such a huge part in my journey after losing our precious boys. I am so thankful for the support I did and continue to receive and I am truly honoured to be involved in such a wonderful organisation. I hope to make my boys proud as I endeavour to support others walking the same path in life. Sending love, strength and support to all.
Adrian Raftery -Treasurer
Husband to Kylie and dad to ~Sophie Cleo~ born 32 weeks on 14th December 2008. Chartered Accountant, part-time leprechaun.
Losing ~Sophie~ was the toughest experience in life, even greater than losing my best friend (my father) two years earlier. Just as there is no book on how to become a father, there is absolutely no book on what to do when you lose your daughter. Life is full of defining moments – those moments that you remember forever – and when we received our Bear of Hope it was a turning point in our grieving process. Despite people telling you to move on, life still sucks and losing ~Sophie~ hurts every single day. The only things that change is that you learn to cope and come to the realisation that life is too short and precious. We told our little girl that we would make a difference and are glad that our part in this program may help other families who receive a Bear of Hope named in her honour.