Rainbows launches new Bereavement Support service for families affected by Covid-19

Families throughout Leicester and Leicestershire who have lost a loved one through Covid-19 in hospital are able to access a new bereavement telephone support service launched by Rainbows.

Launched at the beginning of May, the vital bereavement support service will see our Psychological and Bereavement Lead, alongside our experienced Family Support Team, provide one-to-one support to individuals, creating a safe and confidential space where they can talk through their feelings of grief openly and without judgement.

The referral service is free-of-charge and is open to all adults throughout Leicester and Leicestershire, who have been bereaved due to Covid-19, and comes as Rainbows continue to support the NHS and University Hospitals of Leicester.

David Hamilton, Rainbows’ Psychological and Bereavement Lead said: “I am very pleased that our Family Support Team are utilising their skills in bereavement support to provide this telephone service to families who are bereaved at the University Hospitals of Leicester due to Covid-19. 

“We are aware of the demanding situation for the bereavement team at the hospitals and hope that as well as supporting families this service may be of support to the hospital and build up our existing connections.  

“Bereavement is never easy but the complexities of Covid-19 means that these families may have additional trauma of not being able to be present when a loved one dies, not being able to have the desired funeral, and due to lockdown may have limited contact and support from others. This service will aim to create a safe space to talk and express this difficult reality.”

Kim Sanger, a Specialist Bereavement Nurse at the University Hospitals of Leicester, said: “We are very grateful to the team at Rainbows for offering this service. The support they will provide will make a significant difference to the bereaved during what is a very difficult time.”

The telephone bereavement support service is the latest service offered by Rainbows, as the charity continues to support the NHS, while continuing to offer their end-of-life care and online Family Support services. In March the hospice announced that they would be looking after children and young people from children’s hospitals throughout the East Midlands to help relieve strains on the NHS by freeing up its capacity.

Due to Covid-19, we have had to close our five shops and postpone all fundraising events for the foreseeable future, meaning we are set to lose a significant income. Now more than ever we need the support of the local community to fund the vital services we’re able to provide not only to children and young people with a life-limiting condition, but families throughout the region who have been affected by Covid-19.

If you’re able to support Rainbows financially, please visit rainbows.co.uk/donate