The death of a child is every parent’s worst nightmare, but nobody ever thinks it will happen to them. Hearing the unimaginable news that your child is terminally ill, it can feel as though your whole world is falling apart. As Martha’s Dad Ed found out, you never know what’s around the corner or how you would cope if the worst happened to you.
“One day unexpectedly you might get knocked over by a wave and you won’t see it coming and when you do you will be so grateful that there is a place like Helen & Douglas House.” Ed, Martha’s dad
A home from home when you need it most
Helen & Douglas House helps local families cope with the challenges of looking after a terminally ill baby, child or young adult who will die prematurely.
Helen & Douglas House is a home from home for local terminally ill children and their families. We provide round-the-clock care in a warm, loving environment. We’re a comforting cocoon filled with laughter, a peaceful place where families can create happy memories in their last days, weeks, months or years together.
Making the most of the time they have left together
It is a special place that feels like home from home, where families can make the most of their time together and create happy memories during their children’s short lives. When a child dies, we are there to support the whole family at this really tragic time.
Based in Oxford, but supporting families from surrounding counties and as far as London, we care for terminally ill children and young adults in two special hospices and through our outreach service. At Helen House, the world’s first children’s hospice, we care for babies and children up to the age of 18. At Douglas House, we look after young adults aged 16 to 35.
Parents, brothers, sisters and grandparents are all part of the Helen & Douglas House family. At the toughest time of their lives, we give families the time and space to enjoy the precious moments they have left with each other. In the midst of exhaustion and grief, we help them cope with their child’s final days.
Meet our families – Martha’s story
The death of a child, of any age, brings heartbreak and devastation. Sophie and Ed’s first baby, Martha, was born in a critical condition and she passed away in Sophie’s arms at 5-days-old. Read Martha’s moving story.
We can’t do this without your help
The families who come to us at Helen & Douglas House depend on us to help them – either – face challenges every day during their children’s short lives or deal with living with a child with a terminal illness. But without your help, we can’t give them the expert care and support they need as they are living with a terminal illness.
It costs over £5 million a year to run both hospices, and 85% of this comes from people like you. As a charity, we rely on your support to keep our doors open. Every donation makes a big difference to the help we can offer terminally ill children and families facing the devastating loss of a child.
Your donations mean that families don’t have to face the unthinkable alone.
Make a donation today and help bring comfort and support to families going through every parent’s worst nightmare.