Hospices join forces to offer bereavement help to the whole of Leeds

Two Leeds hospices have generously teamed up to offer their expertise to the whole of Leeds and help those who have lost a loved one during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Thursday, 14th May 2020, 6:00 am

St Gemma's Hospice in Moortown and Sue Ryder Wheatfields in Headingley have come together to launch a Covid-19 bereavement telephone support line for anyone in the city who needs support.

The line is open to people with family members or friends who are critically-ill or who have died from any illness at all during the pandemic.

It is staffed by trained bereavement workers who are able to listen, provide emotional support and signpost to other services if necessary.

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St Gemma's Hospice in Moortown

Chloe Lycett, family support manager at St Gemma’s Hospice, told the Yorkshire Evening Post: "Facing a bereavement under any circumstances can be traumatic, but during a global coronavirus pandemic, it is more difficult than ever.

"People may have to deal with increased trauma, or may be cut off from some of their usual support network.

"So we have developed this new helpline to offer support to the people of Leeds, for anyone with family members or friends who are critically ill, or have died of any illness during this pandemic period."

Wheatfields Hospice director Elaine Hill said: "We are pleased to be working in partnership with St Gemma's Hospice to provide this very valuable bereavement telephone support line.

Sue Ryder Wheatfields Hospice in Headingley.

"Our trained bereavement counsellors are here to listen and support you in any way that we can and we can also direct you to other services if needed.

"During these challenging times for all of us it is more important than ever to stay connected with others.

"Grief and bereavement is a difficult process at the best of times and I would urge anyone needing support with this to get in touch."

To access the Covid-19 support line, call St Gemma's Hospice on 0113 218 5544 or Wheatfields Hospice on 0113 203 3369.

Elaine Hill, director of Sue Ryder Wheatfields Hospice in Headingley

If the phone line is engaged, leave a message with your name and phone number and they will return the call.

The support line is open Monday to Friday between 9am and 4pm.

The kind-hearted move comes at a time when the hospices arevstretched to capacity with the Covid-19 lockdown forcing them to close their shops and wiping out their planned fundraising events this summer.

Earlier this month, Wheatfields issued an urgent plea for donations after its owners at Sue Ryder estimated a £12m funding gap over the next three months.

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