‘Dying Matters’ is a campaign led by Hospice UK to normalise the conversation about dying, death and bereavement. During Dying Matters Awareness Week, individuals, businesses and partners are encouraged to have an open conversation about this difficult topic. 

At Jessie May we know that loss can start even before diagnosis; when parents realise that maybe something ‘is not right’ with their child, and continues all through their child’s life and after their death. We are no strangers to having difficult conversations, which is why our Bereavement Support is available for parents when their child is offered Jessie May support and for up to five years after their child has died.

We have a specific Bereavement Support team at Jessie May, in addition our specialist nurses are expertly trained to provide palliative care to the children they support, helping families to plan ahead for when the time comes. Some of our parents have told us that often they prefer to be supported by the same nurses who visited their child while they were alive, and so all Jessie May nurses have training in listening skills and supporting parents and are experienced in offering support and a listening ear both before and after the death of a child. 

Story from the Frontline: Jessie May Purple Group 

Helen Williams - Bereavement Team Leader

We recently sat down with Jessie May Bereavement Team Leader, Helen Williams, to find out how she and her team have developed the support offered to our Bereaved families (the Purple Group) during the Pandemic.

“When we came out of that last meeting in February, we had no clue that things would spiral as they did. We’d already pencilled in a date for May, and that one didn’t happen. Then July came, and went. We suddenly realised that we’d have to adapt the group and change the way we worked. 

“I wasn’t sure at first whether it was appropriate to take the Purple Group into the ‘virtual’ world, but then we realised that if we didn’t, these parents would go months and months without that support they’ve grown to rely on.” 

You can read more of the conversation with Helen on our previous blog post by using the link below.

Leave your mark on this world 

All the children Jessie May supports will leave their priceless mark on the world, and there’s a very special way that you can leave your mark too – by including a gift to Jessie May in your will.  

We know that including a gift to Jessie May in your will is a big decision and we understand that you will want to provide for your loved ones first. We are happy to answer any questions and give you more information about the care and support that your gift will provide.  

If you have any questions, or would like any more information, please contact our Individual Giving Manager, Kath Jones on 0117 9582174 or email kath.jones@jessiemay.org.uk.  

We can all leave our mark on the world, no matter how long we live. 

Share your stories 

We know so little about others experiences when it comes to death and bereavement, that’s why we hope you feel brave enough to share your stories with us.  

If you want to share your story on social, make sure to tag us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram by using #JessieMay.