On Tuesday, Diane and Sarah were visiting Bluebell Wood to talk about what DBAF can do to help, to plan an upcoming Christmas event and to have a natter with the lovely Julie in the fundraising department.
Bluebell Wood are a hospice providing care and support to children and young people with life shortening and life threatening illnesses. This support isn’t restricted to in-house care, the services Bluebell Wood provide extend into the homes of the children as well. There are currently around 250 families being supported by Bluebell Wood around the region.
The children using the services at Bluebell have a wide range of conditions and illnesses and the hospice has excelled in providing equipment and resources that caters for every possible need. The centre itself is light, airy, welcoming and cheerful with most of the rooms over looking the beautiful playground and gardens.
The lounge and cafe area are the main hub of the building offering lots of activities, entertainment and fun as well as delicious food in the cafe. Whilst Diane and Sarah were there, children were enjoying an interactive balloon modelling show.
As well as the exceptional accommodation, there’s a multi sensory room, hydro therapy room, cinema room, quiet room, arts and craft room, soft play room and music room. The garden and play area, set in tranquil, natural grounds, provide a wonderful space for rejuvenation and playtime and have every outdoor toy and play activity imaginable. Noone is left out with specialist equipment in place for children who need it. The colourful walls are lined with arts and crafts, photos and memories, it’s hard to believe how fun and vibrant the building is.
One of the main objectives of the hospice is to provide support to the families of the children who go there, including much needed suppport to sibling groups. This comes in the form of activities, day trips, counselling and lots and lots of love. There’s even a resident dog, George, who provides lots of laughs and comfort, he’s a very clever dog!
One of the most crucial services provided, one that’s not easy to discuss or think about, is the end of life care. There are family rooms dedicated to families whose child has passed. Rooms that enable parents to grieve in their own time, in a safe, quiet environment. Families can stay there until the funeral and the rooms facilitate keeping their child with them until they feel ready to let go. This eliminates the need to visit a chapel of rest, an undertakers or feel “busy” during an intense mourning period. Visiting this space and hearing the stories of those who have used it was deeply saddening but demonstrated just how invaluable Bluebell Wood is to the people who go there.
And so, it was a wonderful opportunity for our team members to visit and offer to run some workshops there. We are really looking forward to getting stuck in!
We are also organising a Christmas event at Rotherham Town Hall with the help of the lovely Lady Mayoress on behalf of the children of Bluebell Wood. There will be an update on that in the coming weeks.
Thank you so much for having us Bluebell Wood, we can’t wait to get involved!
The DBAF team Xxxx