Northern Ireland news

Families to find solace at new Fermanagh children's hospice

Horizon West, in Killadeas, Co Fermanagh 'will help local families to find solace'

A NEW children’s hospice will help families in Fermanagh and Tyrone to find "solace, calm, comfort, consolation, cheer, support and relief".

Horizon West was officially opened today at Killadeas in Co Fermanagh and is the second children’s hospice in the north.

Chief Executive of Northern Ireland Hospice Heather Weir said children's hospices offer families the chance to "live a life they never thought could be possible”.

“They find solace - calm, comfort, consolation, cheer, support and relief."

The £1.2m facility was opened by Prince Edward Duke of Kent and is the second children’s hospice in the north, alongside Horizon House in Newtownabbey.

Staff and children are creating a piece of art from clay which will feature the word ‘solace’ and be placed in the Horizon West garden as a momento of the official opening.

"The art feature when completed will be a lasting reminder to everyone who sees it that hospice care is a journey of the most specialist and most loving care possible,” Ms Weir said.

The charity’s mission is to provide care for children and young people with conditions for which there is no known cure and it says Horizon West will provide:

  • respite facilities for children and families at any one time
  • end of life care
  • therapy sessions
  • monthly drop-in coffee mornings for parents
  • sibling support activities 
  • bereavement support
  • care in the child’s own home

Horizon West in Fermanagh is the result of a fundraising appeal launched six years ago and driven locally by the Fermanagh Support Group.

Fermanagh Support Group Chair Gladys O’Callaghan paid tribute to the public response to the fundraising campaign.

“What has been achieved locally in Fermanagh and Tyrone is extraordinary. The total raised to date now sits at £1.5 million and all our efforts are now focused on annual running costs," she said.

“I would like to take this opportunity on behalf of the Fermanagh Support Group to thank the local people and all those who have given so generously for all they have done and continue to do to support children’s hospice services.”

The Children’s Hospice charity is lobbying for a dedicated palliative care strategy for children and young people to be implemented.

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