Support for bereaved families

Demelza Kent provide professional, specialist, one-to-one care and support and access to life-enhancing facilities for babies, children and young people up to the age of 18. They received funding from Reconnect to deliver a programme of activities for families and children, to support their emotional wellbeing following the death of a sibling.

Time to reflect

Demelza organised a Snowdrop event to bring bereaved families together. They were given the chance to remember their children, spend time together and reconnect with the hospice, its staff and volunteers.

Through gardening, music, activities and refreshments, families were given the time and space to reflect and come together.

It was nice to spend time together as a family remembering our daughter, which with two teenagers isn't always easy.

A trip to Howletts Wildlife Park

Demelza also organised a trip to Howletts Wildlife Park, to encourage connections with the outside world. This gave families the chance to embrace new experiences and meet other families in similar situations. The families also experienced the Big Cats Talk, which enabled the young people to find connections between the big cats and themselves -  exploring feelings around being brave, feeling powerful and feeling scared.

Families were offered the choice of spending the day together, with the other bereaved families, or to go separately and they chose to stay together. They spent time talking about their experiences and it was a cathartic and supportive experience for them.

Being together as my children hit their teenage years, it's not always the way at home. Having an event like this gives us an excuse to come together.

Other trips and activities

Demelza also arranged:

  • a trip to Wildwood
  • the Bereaved Sibs Day at Kent Hospice - with a songwriter to enable children and young people to work together and share feelings through lyrics.
  • a trip to Gravity in Bluewater
  • a 3 day camp in the summer holidays.