Flower seed butterflies to grow and remember loved ones

Aside from the normal grief that families and friends feel with the loss of a loved one, during these extraordinary times with the Covid19 Pandemic, many will experience the added distress of not being able to be physically at a bed side or hold a loved one’s hand.

Working in partnership, Royal Cornwall Hospitals Charity has been able to support initiatives of the Palliative Care, Bereavement and Chaplaincy at Royal Cornwall Hospital Trust,

“We are very aware that this will be a very difficult time for many of our patient’s families and for those at end of life being separated from family and loved ones can be very difficult. Our caring teams are doing everything they can to bridge that gap, providing compassionate and thoughtful care and with the help of RCHT Charity we hope to bring some additional comfort,” said Liz Thomas Specialist Nurse Palliative & End of Life Care.

For patients at end of life being able to communicate to family and friends can be a very important wish to fulfill. Notelets have been funded through the charity which will allow staff to support patients to write a letter and thoughts to be passed on.

Condolence cards sent from the Trust’s Bereavement Team to the deceased patient’s next of kin now contain a special addition of a butterfly made from paper embedded with flower seeds along with the following message,

“We are sending you this butterfly as a small token from us in memory of your loved one. They have been supplied through kind donations to Royal Cornwall Hospitals Charity.

The shape is embedded with a handful of annual and perennial wildflower seeds. Soak the paper in water overnight. Cover with a thin layer of soil. Keep evenly moist until seedlings are established.

We hope that you enjoy watching them grow.”

Dom Whitting, Chaplain at RCHT explains further the importance of the initiative,

“These butterfly seeds will bring some colour to families going through the heartache and dark times of losing a loved one. Something for them to watch as the seeds grow and then later enjoy the flowers which bloom. All the time remembering those who are no longer with them. ”

The butterflies and notelets have been funded using donations from the local community to the Covid19 Fund of the charity. These funds are for the benefit of staff, volunteers, patients and their families during the Covid19 pandemic.

“It is a real honour for our charity to be able to support our teams, patients and families in this way. We all realise just how difficult it must be for everyone being separated from loved ones in these most difficult times. We hope that these small gestures show in in some way the level of care and compassion that is shown from all corners of our Trust,” said Karen Murrish, Fundraising Manager for Royal Cornwall Hospitals Charity.

Anyone wanting to donate to the Covid19 Fund of Royal Cornwall Hospitals Charity is asked to go to www.virginmoneygiving.com/fund/RCHTCovid19, or contact the Fundraising Team rcht.charity@nhs.net or 01872 252858.

For bereavement information and advice – The Cornwall Coronavirus Bereavement Helpline is available on 01726 829874, from 10 am until 6pm and the RCHT Bereavement Office 01872 252713.

Added on 28 May 2020, in Charity - Patient Care / RCHT Charity