Islamic Help

Spreading Joy At Acorns Children’s Hospice

23 rd December, 2019

Esther and Esme are like any other children. They require love, support and attention during their childhood years.

Esther (left) and Esme

Like any child, they enjoy the friendship of their peers, watching their favourite cartoons and playing with their favourite toys and games.

It is the environment that any loving, stable home would provide. For these two however, ‘home’ in this instance is not a terraced or semi-detached somewhere in Birmingham but Acorns Children’s Hospice in Selly Oak, one of the leading providers of its type in the country.

It’s also where Islamic Help staff and volunteers delivered a range of gifts to be enjoyed by the youngsters. The presents ranged from sensory toys to paints and art equipment.

The team was then given a guided tour of the hospice by Clinical Lead Sally Pearce and met some of its staff and volunteers.

An Islamic Help spokesman said: “It doesn’t matter who you are, where you’re from or your faith or background, children should always be first and foremost in our minds and hearts.

“We were really humbled that Acorns allowed us to visit them and hand a few gifts over, and meeting Esther and Esme lit up our hearts. Acorns provides an invaluable service for these children and their families and deserves all our support.”

The Birmingham hospice is one of three 3 run by Acorns – the others are in Walsall and Worcester – a charity that supports and cares for babies, children and teenagers up to the age of 18 with life-limiting or life-threating conditions, as well as end-of-life care.

It includes specialist palliative care and support to meet the complex medical needs of the youngsters, family support and a holistic service that includes meeting the needs of the bereaved.

Each hospice has 10 bedrooms for its young residents and has been designed to be a happy home-from-home environment, with specialist skilled staff and a range of activities to cater for the youngsters.

These include:
• a hydrotherapy pool that can be used for physiotherapy and fun
• a multi-sensory room
• creative sessions and workshops
• flat screen TVs and computer games consoles for older children
• theme weekends
• gardens designed to enhance the children’s experiences.

As well as each child having a private bedroom, with its own TV and DVD player, there is a family flat where a family can stay while visiting their child or when a child is nearing the end of life.

A family care suite with two adjoining rooms allows a family to stay close by their child, while two other rooms designated as special bedrooms let families spend time with their child before the funeral or funeral directors’ arrival.

The specialist care provided for the children ranges to the meals, which are tailor-made for each child’s specific requirements and cater for vegetarians and halal requirements.

A letter of thanks from Acorns to Islamic Help said: “Such generous donations are essential to Acorns. Acorns relies on the community to fund over 70% of its activities and thoughtful people like yourselves make it possible for Acorns to provide a network of care for life limited and life threatened children and young people, and their families.”

• Acorns is an independent registered charity serving the West Midlands, Worcestershire, Herefordshire, Gloucestershire, Shropshire and Staffordshire
• It costs almost £10 million a year for Acorns to provide its hospices and community care services
• It employs more than 420 staff in the hospices and network of charity shops and can call on the services of more than 1,600 volunteers
• Last year it supported 787 children and 1,223 family members including the bereaved
• Currently it supports 270 children and their families at the hospice in Birmingham, 230 in the Black Country and more than 210 in Worcestershire
• 38% of the children and families at Acorns are from Black, Asian Minority Ethnic (BAME) backgrounds
• On average, every month five of the children Acorns cares for pass away.

You can find out more about Acorns at