Curtis Lynch is excited about Christmas. He knows he has been a good boy this year and that Santa will be bringing him a 3DS.
He smiles brightly as he talks about how he is looking forward to the big day but this Christmas will be especially difficult for Curtis and his younger brother Timothy.
In September of this year Curtis’ daddy Jonathan passed away and Curtis has found these last few months difficult. But he says a service being provided by the Foyle Hospice has helped him to start to piece his life back together.
“They have helped start to heal my heart,” the nine year-old said, which is why he suggested the name ‘Healing Hearts’ for the Hospice’s new Children’s Bereavement Service. His name was selected for the service and this week Curtis received a voucher for Smyths as a thank you.
Curtis’ mum Heather was referred to the Hospice after seeking some help for her children in the wake of their father’s death. Heather said the service has really helped both Curtis and Timothy start to come to terms with their loss. “There have been times when Curtis didn’t feel he could talk to me, so it has been great to know there is somewhere neutral he can come and express his feelings.”
Children and Young Persons’ Facilitator Michelle Kosky explained the service is available to any child who has lost a “significant adult”.
“Their loss does not have to be through cancer and we don’t solely work with children who have lost a parent.”
Michelle worked with Curtis on a one to one basis, but along with this the service also offers group work. She explained further: “Through creative memory work children are encouraged to integrate their lost loved ones into their lives. We don’t just talk. We work through art and other mediums which make it easier for a child to express their feelings.”
To access the service you can contact Michelle at the Foyle Hospice on 71351010.