Wed 21st August 2019 at 12.50 - 14.00

Laura Campbell explained the work and challenges of the Children's Hospices Across Scotland

‘Keep the Joy Alive’ is what CHAS - Children’s Hospices Across Scotland – aims to do for families with a baby, child or young person under 21 who has a life-shortening condition. Laura Campbell began her talk to the Rotary Club of St Andrews by thanking members for the near £7900 they have raised in donations to date for this most worthwhile of charities.  CHAS operates two hospices in Scotland, Rachel House in Kinross and Robin House in Balloch, each providing respite and end of life care, not just for the child but for the whole family. A recent survey found that there are more than 15,000 families in Scotland one of whose younger members has a life-threatening condition, nearly a third of them children under five years of age.  In order to help as many families as possible the charity has been expanding its ‘CHAS at Home’ service, bringing expert understanding of often complex medical conditions and the strain that these can place, not only on parents but also on siblings, into the home. The service operates from Aberdeen and Inverness and reduces the need for what can be time-consuming and costly journeys to hospital. Even in hospitals not all medical staff will be equipped to respond to the special circumstances and emotional needs of the families served by CHAS.  In another new initiative CHAS has therefore begun recruiting Princess Diana Children’s Nurses with expertise in palliative care to work alongside NHS hospital staff. Laura concluded her talk with a moving video showing how CHAS helps families facing the heartbreak of losing a child. Jerry Beaulier was a most appropriate choice for the vote of thanks because he sees at first-hand how joy can be kept alive in challenging circumstances through his involvement with the St Andrews Beach Wheelchair project.

St Andrews Rotary Club has been a supporter of CHAS for many years.

A former fundraiser for CHAS was a member of our Club

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