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Changing the public perceptions of hospice care

Tuesday 18 June 2019

20% of the British public do not know what children’s hospices are (see note for reference)

Chestnut Tree House is joining national charity Together for Short Lives to combat a lack of awareness revealed by a YouGov survey. The survey, conducted on behalf of Together for Short Lives for its Children’s Hospice Week (17-23 June) campaign, found that 20% of the GB public do not know what children’s hospices are. Children’s Hospice Week’s ambition is to raise awareness of what children’s hospices mean to seriously ill children and families, to celebrate the lifeline care they provide and show how they support families to make precious memories. It’s hoped that by changing perceptions around children’s hospices that more families caring for seriously ill children seek help from their local hospice.

Based in Sussex, Chestnut Tree House is a charity offering a range of support for families in East Sussex, West Sussex and South East Hampshire looking after a child or young person with a life-limiting or life-threatening condition. The support provided includes specialist playgroups, art and music therapy, community and respite care, end of life care and support through bereavement. Importantly, the care involves the child or young person’s whole family, lasting as long as they need.

Cordelia’s story

Cordelia is described by her mum as a force to be reckoned with. A lover of life who is constantly on the go, who loves swimming and singing and generally getting messy. But the nine year-old can have up to 40 seizures a day for a few days at a time. On a bad day, she struggles to even get out of bed.

Because of the complexity of Cordelia’s condition, Chestnut Tree House is the only place the family can spend time together away from home. It is also the only place that parents Sharon and Kevin get a full night’s sleep and spend some time as a couple. Read Cordelia’s story here.

Children’s Hospice Week (17-23 June) is run annually by children’s charity Together for Short Lives, and is the UK’s only awareness and fundraising week benefiting children’s hospices and the families they support. The aim of the week is to bring all 54 UK children’s hospices together to raise awareness of the support they provide and to dispel myths and misconceptions about children’s hospice care. This year, the campaign’s theme is Moments that matter, drawing attention to the role hospices play in helping families make special memories together.

How you can help: This year, Chestnut Tree House is calling out for families, community groups, nurseries and schools in the local area to hold a Teddy Bears Picnic during Children’s Hospice Week in aid of the hospice, to raise vital funds and awareness of the work they do. To get involved, supporters just need to pick a date during Children’s Hospice Week, choose where they’d like to hold their picnic, and ask everyone to attend with their favourite teddy bear and a small donation. Every penny raised will help to make a difference – helping Chestnut Tree House to make moments that matter for local children and families.

  • £5 pays for one minute of all Chestnut Tree House’s care services – at the hospice and in families’ own homes
  • £35 enables a child to experience a magical hour in the hospice’s multisensory room
  • £50 will give a child the opportunity to benefit from a swim in the hydrotherapy pool
  • £150 enables a family of four to have an overnight stay in one of Chestnut Tree House’s family rooms whilst their child is cared for by our nurses.

Notes:
YouGov Perceptions Survey Findings
The Fieldwork was carried out by YouGov for Together for Short Lives on 11/12 March 2019.

Together for Short Lives asked the GB public what words or phrases they associated with children’s hospices and children’s palliative care.

A fifth (20%) said they didn’t know what children’s hospices or children’s palliative care mean.

Total sample size was 2004 adults. Fieldwork was undertaken between 12th – 13th March 2019.
The survey was carried out online.
The figures have been weighted and are representative of all GB adults (aged 18+).