Finding Penelope Bay

Over the next several weeks, we are excited to feature the artwork alongside excerpts of the stories from the thirteen families that participated in our 2021 Give Grief a Voice cohort. 

The Give Grief a Voice project provides families who have lost a young child an artistic representation of their child’s life. A professional writer interviews the child’s family in order to ghostwrite the child’s story. Then, a commissioned artist turns the words of the story into a piece of art that the family keeps. 

Buzzy’s Bees fundraises to cover all costs for writing and art – there is no charge to participating families. Both the writers and artists are paid per story.

If you have suddenly or unexpectedly lost a young child (stillbirth – 12yo) and are interested in participating, please fill out an application here. If you are a writer or artist interested in being a part of the program, contact Kelly Tilford at You can donate to the project here and see photos from the event we hosted for the families here

Finding Penelope Bay
Artist: Dianna Fontes
Mixed media (cotton thread, sand & seawater from Yachats/Waldport beaches, acrylic paint & ink, sea salt, glitter) on canvas, 24 x 24 inches

“On the six-month anniversary of her death, we spent a whole day making a bamboo raft out of natural materials we found on the beach around us. We covered the raft with hibiscus flowers. We put a tiny bit of her ashes in a shell and placed the shell in the middle of the raft. Then we all paddled out – there was a group of family and friends with us. We didn’t time it but somehow, it was sunset. We all held hands. We threw flowers in the ocean. Then we let her go.”

  – Penelope’s Mom and Dad