Covid-19 Update (Updated Friday March 27 – 12noon) During these unprecedented times, when information regarding the Covid-19 virus is changing daily, we would like to assure our families, supporters, volunteers and staff that we are following Public Health and NHS advice and working hard to maintain services while keeping everyone safe. In order to protect our children and families, we would ask everyone else not to come in person to either of our two hospices, Hope House or Tŷ Gobaith. Please see further guidance below for families, supporters, volunteers and staff. Our Families: We are committed to maintaining as many of our services as possible and will be making changes on an ongoing basis. Nursing care continues at Hope House and Tŷ Gobaith, where we are prioritising providing end of life care in the hospices and, when possible, at home. When capacity allows we are providing crisis nursing care to families whose child has a life limiting condition. We are working to support the NHS and free up hospital beds and resources, helping to avoid children with life limiting conditions from being admitted to hospital, and supporting children who have been discharged early from hospital for specialist care. Telephone support and advice is available to families whose child is at home. Telephone support is also available to anyone who has been receiving counselling, and our social workers continue to help with crisis situations. We are planning for the worst and working for the best. We are as committed as ever and will do everything in our power to take care of one another. We will keep in touch with you through this time, but please don’t hesitate to ring the hospices to see if we can help. From each and every one of us, we thank you for your support and patience whilst we work through this. More helpful online support and advice can be found here: https://www.togetherforshortlives.org.uk/get-support/supporting-you/family-resources/coronavirus-qa/ Our Supporters: Never before has your continued support been so vital to Hope House and Tŷ Gobaith. As many of you are already aware, around 80% of the cost of providing essential care to our children and families is met by your donations and fundraising. In line with Government advice on social distancing, we have had to cancel many of our forthcoming events. Our fundraising team will be in touch to let you know about any changes and, where possible, new dates. If you have an event or fundraiser planned for our charity and would like advice, or to chat through any concerns, please call our fundraising teams – Hope House on 01691 671671 or Tŷ Gobaith on 01492 596581. To protect our vulnerable children, we are asking supporters not to call personally at the hospices until further notice, but we would be forever grateful if during this crisis you are able to support us further by making donations online, or by post. Our Shops: With a heavy heart, the decision has been taken to close our shops with immediate effect until further notice. Our first duty is to the welfare of our staff, volunteers and supporters and we are confident that this is the right decision at the right time. We would like to thank everyone for their support – our staff and volunteers who have been amazing in keeping our shops running until now, and our supporters who have continued to bring in gifts of stock and to shop. While our shops are closed, please don't bring stock donations or leave them outside because no one will be available to process them. To safeguard our children and families, please also do not bring stock to the hospices or call at them in person. We look forward to the day when we can open our doors again, but in the meantime stay safe everyone. Our Volunteers: We are so lucky to have such brilliant volunteers who donate time, knowledge and experience to help us. We recognise that it has become more difficult for our volunteers to help us during the Coronavirus pandemic and encourage you to put your health and wellbeing first and stay safe this time of uncertainty. Our Staff We have an amazing team at Hope House Children’s Hospices and we have been bowled over by everyone's enthusiasm, flexibility and sheer determination to continue supporting local children and families during these difficult times. In line with Government recommendations, we are implementing strict measures to minimise infection risk, and asking non-care members of staff to work from home where possible. Our Senior Management Team is providing daily updates to all staff, and by pulling together as one team, supporting each other and remaining calm we will work through whatever this pandemic brings.