It all began with a mom and dad reading to their daughter, Gabriella Canaan, who was born still in November 2022. Then they collected books to donate to local hospitals for other bereaved parents.
The mission of Gabriella’s Little Library is to bring comfort and hope to families experiencing infant loss. In the hours immediately following the death of an infant, there are many decisions that need to be made. All of us who have experienced loss also know that time with your child is fleeting. By providing books to families while they are in hospitals, we hope to provide peaceful moments of connection amidst the grief.
Meet Kyle and Susan Koerner, Gabriella's parents and the co-founders of Gabriella's Little Library. Gabriella is their first child, and they grieve her loss deeply to this day. Susan had a normal first pregnancy until at 19 weeks 1 day her water broke. She was then put on bedrest for the duration of her pregnancy. Gabriella was born still at 21 weeks 1 day. In the hours that followed Gabriella's birth, there were many decisions that needed to be made, people to call, and people in and out of the hospital room. Susan and Kyle knew that they only had a limited time physically with Gabriella. Susan asked her mom to bring two board books to the hospital so that they could have time reading to Gabriella. In the midst of the chaos and overwhelming grief, the time they were able to spend holding their daughter and reading to her brought them moments of peace. They founded Gabriella's Little Library as a way to help every parent have an opportunity to connect to their baby after loss.
Our core values
We care about families experiencing perinatal loss and seek to provide comfort in the dark hours following the loss of a baby.
We believe that reading to your baby after loss provides a great opportunity for parents to connect as a family.
We seek opportunities for families that experience loss to parent their child and with other families who have gone through similar circumstances.
We believe in bringing awareness to perinatal loss and bereavement by providing a safe space for these stories to be told.
We strive to be the hands and feet of Jesus Christ through our mission to comfort those who mourn the loss of their babies.
We aim to ensure that every family has an opportunity to read a book to their baby that is reflective of their culture.
To provide the comfort, peace, and hope of Christ to families experiencing the loss of an infant through providing the books for families to read to their babies.
So far, we have collected over 600 books and donated 300 to local hospitals. More donations are coming! So far, we have made special deliveries to AdventHealth Shawnee Mission, University of Kansas Medical Center, KC Hospice and Palative Care, Centerpint, Research Medical Center, Onaga Hosptial, Nemaha Valley Community Hospital,and Alexandra's House.
Want to get involved with Gabriella's Little Library? Contact us to find out more about becoming a book drop off location, starting a book drive with your organization, or volunteering your talents to serve Gabriella's Little Library!