Winston’s Wish provide face to face therapeutic support to children and families suffering bereavement.
As the first charity to establish child bereavement support services in the UK, Winston's Wish continues to lead the way in providing specialist child bereavement support services, including in-depth therapeutic help in individual, group and residential settings.
Winston's Wish was established by Julie Stokes OBE, a clinical psychologist, in 1992 to meet the needs of bereaved children and their families. The idea took root when Julie visited the US and Canada on a Winston Churchill Travelling Fellowship. Having been inspired by the services she saw there, Julie returned to the UK to set up Winston’s Wish.
Claire is one parent to be helped: "After losing my husband I found there wasn't much local support available. Having five boys I found it increasingly difficult to find ways to support them as they were all dealing with their grief in different ways and at different stages.
"For a while we muddled through but life was hard, very stressful and at times unbearable. To watch my children full of sadness was heart-breaking! I felt I was failing them. Then I went to the Winston's Wish drop-in in Wigan. I felt instantly welcome and for the first time in a very long time there was a glimmer of hope for my family. I have met some lovely people. While the children are busy with their arts and crafts it's a time for parents, grandparents and others to chat, exchange ideas and thoughts and to be part of a group that understands your situation. It's a safe place to share your worries and concerns and reassuring to know that you’re not on your own.