Julia’s House Wiltshire Hospice Tour
In this video, Claudia from our Charity of the Year, Julia’s House takes us on a tour of the Wiltshire hospice, as well as gives us some history of the charity.
Tour of the Hospice script
Welcome to Julia’s House children’s hospice here in Wiltshire.
We care for the most seriously ill children and their families in their homes and here at our hospice.
My name is Claudia. I am a fundraiser. Let me go and show you around!
Here we are in our amazing reception area at Julia’s House, where we welcome children and their families every week.
Julia’s House began with an idea from an amazing lady called Julia Perks, who was a paediatric nurse. She really cared for poorly children and their families. She cared so much that she would have children come and stay at her home to give exhausted parents a break. Sadly, Julia passed away, but her friend Mike Wise and the local community took up the fundraising baton to make Julia’s house what it is today in Dorset and here in Wiltshire.
Julia’s House is a charity. This means that we rely almost entirely on donations to help fund our lifeline of care for seriously ill children and their families.
We’ve been really lucky over the years with amazing support from local people, schools, business, and even Iron Man himself.
This is our amazing sensory room, and I’m here with one our incredible Play Workers, Lisa.
Lisa, can you tell me a bit more about what our children use the room for? Yes. So this is a nice, quiet space where the children can come and spread out. They can explore the different lights sounds and textures. It’s a really nice, quiet atmosphere for them to take some time. And what happened recently on one of our sessions? So we actually told a sensory story in here. So we had a couple of children who were telling the story with the puppets while I was reading the story, and they absolutely loved being a part of the story process.
This is our den.
We’ve got loads of whizzy stuff in here and the teenagers we care for love to battle it out on our games consoles, play our musical instruments, and even have a go at karaoke. My favourite is the magic carpet.
Here we have our Legacy Tree. This is where we remember the kind people who’ve left us donations in their Wills. Amazingly, one in four of our children are cared for by gifts in Wills.
We’re now in a very special area of our hospice. We have Pegasus and Chalk Horse, two of our bedrooms. I’m here with one of our lead nurses, Lisa.
Lisa, can you tell me a bit more about these bedrooms? So this is our end of life suite. We have Pegasus and Chalk Horse. The child will be in Pegasus and there’s adjoining room for the family and siblings if they want to stay as well. We even had the family dog come and stay during one episode of end of life care. The rooms go directly out onto the garden, so the family can take some time out for some quiet reflection, if that’s what they’d like to do.
Tell us what happens on a day to day here at Julia’s House. Well, the children come in for respite, so the parents can have a rest and they know each other, they’ve made friends, and the hospice is always full of laughter and happiness and music and they have great fun and the nurses and carers look after them and their complex medical needs. Everybody goes home having had a really great day.
Welcome to our activity room. This room is for fun. We even have noughts and crosses on the ceiling. When children are in here, they can bake, do arts and crafts, watch a film, and play with lots and lots and lots of toys.
We don’t just care for the seriously ill child, we care for the whole family. And this includes brothers and sisters. I’m here with our Sibling Worker, Tracey.
We use the activity room for siblings sessions, activity days, and sleepovers. This gives siblings the opportunity to have some time just to themselves and to spend time with children who understand how they feel, gain some peer support and some support from us at the same time. We spend time with the siblings out in the community, so we visit them at their homes and we could take them out to spend some time with us. But crucially I’m there to listen to them and just be there for them.
I imagine having lots of fun too. We do have lots of fun.
One of the most loved areas in our hospice is here in the garden. We have lots to explore, a big bucket swing, mud kitchen, sensory plants, and even a wheelchair friendly trampoline. And we have some parties out here, too.
Up at the top, we have a quiet place with a fountain, where parents and grandparents can sit and reflect.
Now we all love a bath. The children absolutely love our bathroom and our bath, and they’ll often come in for a session for the day and they’ll all go home bathed. In this bath, which is like a computer it has lots of lights that change colour and there’s a jacuzzi in it so we have lots of bubbles and they have great fun.
A lot of the children are in wheelchairs, so they cant get in and out of the bath on their own. So we have a hoist system in here so we hoist them in the bath and hoist them out again.
And the last stop on our tour is the conservatory, where we like to have a break, a cup of tea and a chat.
We’re all going to wish you a good bye from here.
For more information, please visit Julia’s House‘s website.
Julia’s House are our official Charity of the Year from April 1st 2023 until March 31st 2024. We share this video on our website, with huge thanks to them, and we look forward to supporting them further throughout the year.
Want to help us support Julia’s House, you can donate to our Charity of the Year Just Giving page here. We thank you in advance for your support.