With Christmas just around the corner, this year more than ever we will want to celebrate and spend quality time with the people we love, even if that might look different than we expected. People who are approaching end of life or coping with a bereavement might find the festive season a difficult and overwhelming time of year.
More than one million people in the UK are expected to be caring for someone with a terminal illness this Christmas, during what could be their last one together. Millions of people have also been bereaved since lockdown began and with every death, comes grieving friends and family.
Many of your readers in these situations may find themselves struggling to cope with the demands and pressures of the festive season or feel isolated and don’t know who or where to turn to for extra support.
Marie Curie trained Support Line Officers can provide practical information on everything from managing day-to-day with a terminal illness, to planning ahead. We also offer emotional support if someone needs a safe space to talk. We have a dedicated bereavement service where callers will be paired with a volunteer, who can offer a regular listening ear, as well as a Check-in and Chat befriending service that lets you arrange a call back from our support line at a time that suits you, whether you need support or just someone to talk to.
If your readers have been affected by dying, death and bereavement and need support over Christmas and New Year, then please urge them to contact Marie Curie for free on 0800 090 2309.
Alternatively, visit mariecurie.org.uk/support to chat online or to find out other ways we can support you.
The support line is also open to doctors, nurses and other healthcare professionals dealing with end of life care this Christmas. Our online information platform, the Palliative Care Knowledge Zone, includes guidance for professionals on palliative care which is updated regularly.
Marie Curie Information and Support Line Christmas opening hours: • 21, 22 & 23 December (8am - 6pm) • 24 December (10am - 4pm) • 25 & 26 December (10am - 2pm) • 27 December (closed) • 28 December (10am- 4pm) • 29 December (8am – 6pm) • 30 December (8am - 6pm) • 31 December (10am - 4pm) • 1 January (10am - 2pm) • 2 January (11am – 5pm) • 3 January (closed)