The Duchess of Cambridge has penned a letter of support to mark the start of Children’s Hospice Week, which begins today.
The week aims to raise awareness and funds for children’s hospice and palliative care services across the UK.
Kate Middleton is the Royal Patron of East Anglia’s Children’s Hospices (EACH), and has been giving her support to Children’s Hospice Week every year since 2013. In the letter, she writes:
“Children’s hospices provide vital sanctuaries for those experiencing the very toughest of times. They help families and carers build lifelong memories that are poignant, happy and often filled with laughter.
“Whether through specialist play aimed at deepening relationships between children and their families, or through art and music therapy that helps young people express themselves and release their thoughts and feelings – the work of organisations like East Anglia’s Children’s Hospices can set a truly heart-warming example to us all.
“They provide a lifeline to children and families for however long support is needed and I hope that others join me in thanking them as we shine a light on their work during Children’s Hospice Week.
“The theme this year is ‘Moments that Matter. It aims to make the most of the very precious time that those using hospice services have. Throughout the week we will hear amazing stories from families facing the toughest of futures. I hope that they will inspire each and every one of us to similarly make the most of the time we have with our own families, by ensuring every moment matters and that we create memories that last forever. “
The awareness is organised by Together for Short Lives, the charity for children with life-limiting conditions and their families. Welcoming The Duchess of Cambridge’s message of support, the charity’s chief executive Andy Fletcher said:
“We are thrilled that Her Royal Highness, The Duchess of Cambridge has sent a personal message of support for Children’s Hospice Week 2019, shining a light on the vital role hospices play in building life-long memories for children, young people and families. The Duchess’s words, and her support over many years, help to challenge perceptions about children’s hospices and to show they are happy and inspiring services that offer a lifeline to families through the very toughest of times.”
Graham Butland, EACH CEO said:
“We know and the families we’ve supported know just how much of a positive difference children’s hospices can make, providing truly memorable moments of fun and inspiration, but there’s still a clear gap in the knowledge of many others.
“We often hear from families how they expected our hospices to be sad and dark places. That’s simply not the case, as Her Royal Highness knows from her visits to us, and it’s fantastic to have her continued support in raising awareness. Children’s Hospice Week is always a really important time of year for us and all children’s hospices across the UK, and I hope people will once again join The Duchess in championing the role they have to play.”
Children’s Hospice Week runs from June 17 – 23