OUR PEOPLE

Meet Elaine

My name is Elaine, and I am the lead Palliative care Nurse at Richard House and I have been here for 11 years. Before Richard House I didn’t know about Children’s hospices, but instantly when I walked in here, I thought this place was so homely.

ROLE

Lead Palliative Care Nurse

TIME WITH RICHARD HOUSE

11 years

Experiencing one to one care really opened my eyes to where I wanted to go next.

What is your favourite thing about working with Richard House?

The families and the children. Just meeting the children and their families, I have a lot more involvement with the families and we work in partnership with them.

What I have also found since working here is that we do a beautiful death for a child and we put memory making at the heart of it. It’s that feeling of knowing that when people go away from here, they have good memories of their child’s life. It’s lovely knowing that we are part of that.

What is your favourite memory?

We had a 10 year-old-child come in with bone cancer in her legs. She couldn’t walk and she had a manual wheelchair. She had no independence, but she was very smart and wanted to be like every other 10 year-old. She was with us for over a year, and she felt restrained by constantly having to use a carer to move her around.

Six months into her being here, she was given a motorised wheel chair. She was whizzing off down the road – so excited! She stopped, turned round and said to the care team “come on you lot” and I just thought- look at that. I didn’t realise how little things like having her own independence would make such a difference.

What do you think is the most underappreciated aspect of your job and nursing?

Getting the children out in the real world is a really difficult task, as a lot of time our children are stuck at home.

We have got to make sure there is all the equipment to keep the child alive and how heavy it is and how much space it takes up. When Parents know we have taken their child on an outing they are so grateful, as they don’t have the car space or strength to do it.

What have you learnt most?

I have learnt that when parents are stressed it is not personal. We work long hours to give the best care possible for our children, and we understand that parents are stressed, tired, worried and in a routine.

It is hard to juggle, sometimes, the emotional wellbeing of parents as well as the medical needs of the child.

Our incredible team are a family

The reason why Richard House is always such a joyful place is down to our amazing team of nurses, fundraisers, volunteers, directors, and anyone who is apart of the Richard House family.

Make a difference today

Your generosity can light up a child’s world. Join us in spreading joy and hope. Donate now. Every contribution matters.

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Donation Total: £75.00

To purchase messy play supplies to help a life-limited child to explore, create and build confidence

To buy sensory toys for children with complex health needs, to improve their concentration and have fun!

Gives one hour of respite care in the hospice, providing some relief for parents who have to care around the clock.