Our Impact

Australia’s solely SIDS focused charity: We’re not just an organisation; we’re a community of change-makers, invested in scientific research, safe sleep education and advocacy. Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) is a silent menace, claiming the lives of 100-130 precious babies each year in Australia. River’s Gift is Australia’s solely SIDS focused charity.

Our journey began with a solemn pledge, sparked by the heart-wrenching loss of River Waddell in November 2011—a commitment to spare other parents from enduring such unimaginable pain.

Our support extends to Boston Children’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School, the Florey Institute of Neuroscience and Mental Health in Melbourne (FINMH), University of South Australia (UniSA), the University of Adelaide, University of Sydney, and La Trobe University. Together, we’re pioneering a path to a safer world for infants.

Our reach extends from Pregnancy Babies & Children’s Expos (PBCE) across Australia to Barwon Health, Epworth Geelong, Colac Area Health Service, Ballarat Health Service, Wimmera Health Service, and more.

Our community is growing strong, with 2000 people joining us at our fundraising events in 2023. Together, we’re creating a world where no parent has to experience the anguish and heart-wrenching reality of SIDS.

Join us in this life-changing journey. Together, we are the guardians of a brighter and safer future for our children, in honour of those we’ve lost.

Fundraising invested in SIDS research globally
We provide infant safe sleep education
We support bereaved families affected by SIDS

Our Purpose

River’s Gift have a laser focus on Stamping Out SIDS, with an overarching strategy that centres on three key areas:

AdvocacyThrough the voice of lived experience, we are advocating for SIDS to ensure that government, academia and the community are focused on preventing and eliminating SIDS.

Research – We are identifying and funding research that will deliver a meaningful contribution to finding a preventative cure for SIDS.

Education – We are promoting and supplementing existing evidence-based safe sleep education programs that support the prevention of SIDS.

Stamping Out SIDS

How You Can Help

Our Story

River's Gift was founded in November 2011 by Alex Hamilton and Karl Waddell, two devastated yet focused and determined parents who were searching for answers surrounding the sudden and unexpected death of their healthy baby boy, River. River passed away in his sleep at just 128 days old, with no cause of death established after a thorough forensic investigation. River’s death was classified by the coroners as a SIDS case.
River's Gift Story

News & Events

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