Children’s Hospice South West: Little Bridge House, Fremington

A group of 20 members of Glenorchy Church and Withycombe Raleigh WI set off on the 24th June to visit Little Bridge House, where children with life threatening diseases and their families are cared for. It was built after funds had been raised by a husband and wife who had children suffering from a terminal disease. It has extensive grounds enabling it to be extended to meet the needs of so many young people over the years.

The rooms for patients are situated on the ground floor overlooking beautifully kept gardens, with colourful flowers, bushes and trees. The rooms have patio doors and there are many bird feeders attracting lots of different birds, giving pleasure to those watching. Each room is set up with all the medical equipment required for each patient’s care, and items such as favourite books, toys, games, and pictures are made ready for their arrival, according to the individual’s interests.

On the floor above are rooms thoughtfully prepared for the families of patients where all their needs are catered for during their time of respite. All the corridors have lovely pictures and collages and small areas with toys which look so colourful and welcoming. There is a large room with pool and table tennis tables, many computers, television, radios with ear phones, guitars a piano and books for siblings to enjoy.

There is also a wonderfully set up craft room to cover so many different crafts and a play area with climbs and ball pools for great fun. A quiet area has enormous cushions to lie on peacefully, watching slowly changing kaleidoscope like coloured lights on the walls and ceiling. There is also a large pool for patients to lie safely in harness in the soothing warm water. There are also fun play areas and wide paths outside for those well enough to go outside to enjoy the gardens in wheelchairs, with their siblings. It really takes your breath away to see what care and thought goes into all they do, for these precious families.

There are so many dedicated staff providing the amazing care offered. Doctors, specialist nurses, physiotherapists, counsellors and church representatives, none of whom wear uniforms, and an army of volunteers who give freely of their time to make Little Bridge House the wonderful place it is. There is a beautiful Chapel for those who need this peaceful place to share their worries and thoughts with God and a room for those who have passed on to join their Lord, where their relatives can say their last goodbyes.

I am sure our visit made us appreciate the wonderful work carried out at Little Bridge House and to thank God for those dedicated people who show such love and care for others. They were extremely grateful for the £400 donation raised by our Mission Committee for their continued work and for the knee blankets, prepared and taken every 2 years for the comfort of those sitting in wheelchairs. Letters of thanks have been received since our visit.
Sue Densham