Family Support - working with schools

Family Support
Primrose in the Community

Family support students have been out and about in the community, delivering workshops to local primary schools. The workshops were aimed at children aged 6-9 years and intended to be fun and educational at the same time. The sessions have been very successful, one of the class teacher’s commented,

‘That it was a fun and interesting way for their children to learn about lifecycles, but and at the same time raised some fundamental questions about the cycle of life’.

The first session focused on the life cycle of a sunflower, and as part of the session the children planted their own sunflowers seeds which they loved! The follow up session focused on the life cycle of a dragonfly and the children particularly enjoyed playing our own version of primrose bingo. The feedback from the children was extremely positive, and hopefully the program will run again next spring.

How can Family Support help?

People may think that Primrose Hospice only helps individuals who are nearing the end of their life. However, we also support people with chronic, life-threatening illness. The case studies below will demonstrate how we are helping two families come to terms with the future.

Case study 1
Michael is a 42 year old husband and father who was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis in 2006. Initially, Michael remained positive about his diagnosis, however as time passed he became more anxious and depressed. Michael was first referred to the hospice in Oct 2011.
The Hospice provided Michael with one-to-one counselling and hypnotherapy on a weekly basis. Michael says that accessing family support at the hospice has reduced his anxiety and he is now feeling more positive.
Michael’s 6 year old daughter Jenny has family support input at school on a weekly basis. During these sessions they have been exploring Jenny’s emotions and ways to manage her anger effectively.

Case study 2

Laura 37 lives with her husband Andrew 34, and their five children, Jessica, Amy, Phoebe, Lizzy and Zach. Laura was diagnosed with stomach cancer in Feb 2012. The Family Support team are supporting the whole family to come to terms with Laura’s illness.

Laura and Andrew both attending one to one weekly counselling sessions, they are also accessing support from Primrose’s CAB advisor and the Chaplain. In addition they also receive family support at home, and in the future may access one-to-one support for their children. The Family Support Services have and continue to be beneficial to Laura and Andrew, Laura says that she is very grateful to everyone that works in the hospice as they have helped her come to terms with her diagnosis.

These case studies demonstrate a small piece of the work that Primrose Hospice and its Family Support team do on a daily basis. Without this help many service users and their families would possibly feel isolated and alone. However, with support, it is possible to make a difference to people’s lives through acceptance of their circumstances.