Family Support & Bereavement Services

Grief and loss are complex emotional issues which affect us all at some time or another. At the Hospice of the Good Shepherd we have a dedicated and professional team providing support to people throughout West Cheshire who are dealing with bereavement following the death of a loved one, regardless of when, where or how they died. Counselling is also available to those affected by a life-limiting illness.

Bereavement Help Points

The Bereavement Help Point is a friendly space open to anyone who is bereaved or is supporting someone who is bereaved. Drop in, collect information on bereavement and support, chat with one of our trained volunteers or with other bereaved people. Everyone welcome.

A fantastic opportunity for the community to support each other, and for those grieving the loss of a loved one to be reassured they are not alone.

Chester: Storyhouse, Hunter Street, Chester, CH1 2AR
When: 2nd & 4th Wednesday of the month
Time: 2:00pm – 4:00pm

Ellesmere Port: Ellesmere Port Library, Civic Way, Ellesmere Port, CH65 0BG
When: 2nd & 4th Thursday of the month
Time: 2:00pm – 4:00pm

Blacon: Blacon Enterprise Centre, 51 The Parade, Blacon, Chester, CH1 5HW
When: 1st & 3rd Wednesday of the month
Time: 10:30am – 12:30pm

The Help Point model is being adopted by hospices across the country, and because it lends itself to a variety of settings, it can also be undertaken and delivered by established organisations and groups, with training and support from the Hospice.

For information on how to deliver a new Bereavement Help Point, please contact Eleanor Warman or the West Cheshire Bereavement Service on 01244 853193 or bereavement@hospicegs.com.

Counselling

Our Bereavement Support Service is able to offer one-to-one counselling to support adults (aged 18+) who are dealing with bereavement. A service called Reflect exists to support children and young people aged under 18.

Counselling provides an opportunity for you to talk openly about your feelings and concerns in a safe, caring and confidential environment. Your counsellor will listen respectfully and non-judgmentally, giving you the opportunity to explore thoughts, feelings and memories. A counsellor won’t tell you what to do, but they will help you to consider your situation and help you make your own informed decisions.

People may find counselling helpful to:

  • explore challenging emotions like anger or guilt
  • manage physical responses like sleep loss, lack of concentration, anxiety or panic attacks
  • cope with other crises, pressures or health problems
  • understand and handle changes within families
  • develop their resources and skills to deal with grief and other difficulties

Often the process of sharing can be difficult – where there are painful memories, complicated emotions, relationship difficulties and areas of conflict – but talking these things through often proves to be very helpful.

If you’d like to know more, or if you feel you would benefit from counselling, please contact our Bereavement Support Services Team on 01244 853193 or email bereavement@hospicegs.com.

If at any point you decide not to continue with the counselling, just let us know, and the service will be available to you again in the future.

Befriending Service

Our Befriending Service and Mollington drop-in sessions are available for bereaved people.

Some people may feel that individual counselling isn’t the right fit for them, but would still appreciate somebody to talk to for additional support. Our befriending team of trained and supervised volunteers are able to meet you in your own home to offer support and a listening ear. If you prefer, we can arrange for our befriending team to call on the telephone instead.

Our befriending team also run a drop-in session at Mollington Village Hall every first and third Tuesday of the month from 10:00am until Noon. This is an opportunity to meet our team, and other people who have experienced bereavement, in an informal and welcoming atmosphere.

If you’re interested in meeting with one of our befriending team, or have questions about attending our Mollington drop-in session, please call our Bereavement Support Service on 01244 853193 or email bereavement@hospicegs.com.

A Time to Remember

‘A Time to Remember’ remembrance evenings are held three times each year in our Hospice chapel, and run in association with our Spiritual Care Team. If you have a loved one who has died in the Hospice, these evenings provide an opportunity for reflection and remembrance of their life. You are welcome to attend alone, or with family or friends for support.

For more information please contact the Bereavement Support team at bereavement@hospicegs.com.

Reflect Children’s & Young People’s Service

Reflect offers information, support, signposting and one-on-one counselling for people aged 3-17 and their families living in Western Cheshire, dealing with bereavement or who have a family member with a life-threatening or life-changing diagnosis.

We work with children and young people to identify and develop their own resilience and resources to support them in difficult times. Children are given the opportunity to explore their story in relevant ways, and through a range of different media.

Children can be seen at their school during term time or in the welcoming Family Room at the Hospice of the Good Shepherd.

If you’re interested or have any questions please contact the Reflect team on 01244 851104 or email reflect@hospicegs.com.

Remembering Days

Throughout the year we hold Remembering Days. These events are opportunities for families, children and young people to come together in remembrance of their special person, and to meet others who have lost someone special too.

For example, in May 2014 we held a Storytelling Day. Families shared stories and listened to the stories of others.

Further Information

For more information and advice regarding some of the emotional reactions experienced by adults and children during bereavement, please visit our Coping with Bereavement and Grief page. To access further resources view our Bereavement Booklet or Counselling & Bereavement Leaflet.