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Rosemarie Finley’s column

Thursday 20 February 2020

Hospice care on the road

I’d like to tell you a little bit about the St Barnabas House Hospice Outreach Project, or ‘HOP’ as it is affectionately known. Some of you may be familiar with the HOP – a large teal St Barnabas branded vehicle that parks up in public spaces across the Worthing, Adur, Arun and Henfield areas.

Rosemarie Finley headshot

The aim of the HOP is to bring hospice care to the community, hopefully making it accessible to you all. With 14 visits every month to a variety of venues, anyone is welcome to drop in, with the team on hand to listen to any concerns you might have, as well as sharing information about St Barnabas House and other local services which might be of help.

It is manned by specially-trained staff and volunteers who are able to provide free information and support to people who are ill, bereaved or worried about someone who is.

On average, each year over 1,000 people benefit from face-to-face support on board the HOP and over a third of those individuals have grief or bereavement worries. Often people aren’t aware that there are lots of services out there to support them during this difficult time and we’re fortunate to have a quiet space on the HOP where they can chat privately with Marcelle, our HOP lead, who is able to offer emotional and practical support should they need it.

Each month, the HOP has a different theme, ranging from carer’s support and mental health to will writing and advanced care planning. These changing themes help to open up conversations and often provide a starting point for people to talk about the issues that are affecting them.

If you see the HOP when you’re out and about, do pop in and say hello. And if you know someone who may be in need of some support, please let them know that the HOP may be a good place for them to get some information or help.

To find out where the HOP will be during February and March, visit www.stbh.org.uk/outreach