An outreach service from Scotland’s children’s hospice association designed to increase help for families in the North East was launched last Friday by Minister for Parliamentary Business Brian Adam MSP.
Over 100 guests gathered at Aberdeen’s Beach Ballroom for the launch of the CHAS at Home Aberdeen service, which was also attended by the Henderson family from Aberdeenshire, who have been helped by the hospice to care for their son, Greg.
CHAS at Home, run by Children’s Hospice Association Scotland (CHAS), will provide a free home care service to families who have children with a life-shortening condition, offering nursing care, emotional support and practical help. The new Aberdeen base complements the existing CHAS at Home service based in Inverness and from the two children’s hospices run by CHAS, Rachel House in Kinross and Robin House in Balloch. The development of the home care team will enable CHAS to provide support to more families in their own homes in between visits to the two children’s hospices, or when a child or young person is too ill to travel.
CHAS currently supports 11 families in the Grampian area, including the Henderson family, as well as four further families in the area who are bereaved. It’s believed that this is less than 50% of children and young people in Grampian who are known to have life-shortening conditions. With an increased North-East profile, CHAS is hopeful that more families will be encouraged to use the service.
CHAS Chief Executive Maria McGill said that the day was one which had been “long awaited”, as she introduced the new Aberdeen team.
“CHAS already has a presence in Aberdeen with our fundraising team and we’re hoping the new CHAS at Home service will help reach out to more families from this area and increase awareness of CHAS”, said Ms McGill. “Caring for children and young people is at the heart of all that we do and we’re looking forward to working alongside existing care services in the community.”
Brian Adam said: “The new Home Care Service is a huge boost for families in the Aberdeen area and will give them continued support in their most familiar surroundings.
“It is inspiring to see the work CHAS does to support children and young people with life limiting conditions and I saw from the family I met on Friday, just how valuable this service will be.”
To find out more about the CHAS at Home Aberdeen service contact the team on 01224 624858 or to support CHAS visit www.chas.org.uk