There is only one children’s hospice in the whole of Surrey. Christopher’s hospice is at Artington just outside Guildford. The Leader of Surrey County Council Tim Oliver, organised a visit for the Chairman of SCC Helyn Clack and the High Sheriff and his wife Wendy on 1st September. The CEO Paul Farthing showed them around the hospice after a full discussion about the work it does caring for babies, children and young people with life-limiting conditions, and their families, who come from Surrey and West London. (There is a Shooting Star hospice in SW London). The hydrotherapy pool is a most important asset. The outside play area has really good attractions for the children. There is a tranquil memorial garden with memory trees. They bear rust-coloured copper leaves engraved with the child’s name and age, hung permanently to honour the life of the child.
Bespoke support is provided free of charge to families and it’s available every day of the year. It includes a comprehensive range of therapies and support groups for the whole family, specialist nursing care and respite, symptom management, end-of-life care and bereavement support.
In August 2022 the hospice was given the highest possible overall rating of “outstanding” by the Care Quality Commission, following its May inspection. The accolade meant the hospice retained its previous outstanding rating, which reflects the incredible care it provides. Training can be given on site as there is an Education Centre in a separate building.
Very little of the charity’s funding comes from the government, so it’s thanks to supporters across the county that its vital care service can continue. May the people of Surrey continue to give generously to this remarkable hospice. All members of its staff do wonderful work for those who need to come to the hospice. To make a donation visit shootingstar.org.uk.