HRH The Duchess of Cambridge has recorded a video message to celebrate and mark the beginning of Children’s Hospice Week.
The Duchess talks about her personal experience of the incredible difference that children’s hospices and palliative care services can make for children and families, and asks everyone to join her this Children’s Hospice Week to shine ‘a light on the dedicated and inspirational staff and volunteers, and the lifeline services they provide for children and their families’.
One of the charities involved is Chestnut Tree House in Sussex, which supports children with life-limiting conditions and their families.
Hugh Lowson, CEO of Chestnut Tree House said: “We are all thrilled that HRH The Duchess of Cambridge is helping to raise awareness of services like Chestnut Tree House by marking Children’s Hospice Week.
“It is so important for us to spread the word about the specialist care services we offer local children and their families.
“Since Chestnut Tree House opened in 2003, the number of children we care for has increased from 30 to over 300 and we know there are more people who need our help.
“We are incredibly grateful for all the support we receive from our local community, as without this we simply wouldn’t be able to continue reaching out to families and providing this vital care.”
Children’s Hospice Week runs from today until Sunday, May 28, and is organised by the UK children’s palliative care charity Together for Short Lives.
Welcoming The Duchess of Cambridge’s message of support, Barbara Gelb OBE, CEO for Together for Short Lives, said: “The Duchess’s words, and her amazing support for Children’s Hospice Week since 2013, have been transformational, helping to raise awareness of the needs of seriously ill children and families and to show that help is at hand.
“Families coming to terms with the heart-breaking news that their child will die young often say that it is the most isolating time and they simply don’t know where to turn for help.
“That’s why the Duchess’s words are so poignant – it’s a clear message that help is available from the remarkable children’s hospice and palliative care services right across the UK.
“This support can make a world of difference for families.”
Children’s hospice services are all charities and rely on the generosity of the public to deliver their lifeline care and support.
Find out more about Children’s Hospice week here