Together for Short Lives
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Emotional Support and Counselling

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Emotional and psychological support can help you cope with the initial diagnosis as well as throughout your child’s illness and in bereavement.

Emotional support can come from different people at different times and can take many forms; sometimes the best support can be someone’s practical help, a friendly gesture or just someone being there to listen.

In some cases, however, professional support may be required to help you through this difficult time. This factsheet provides contact details for some of the key charities and organisations that are experienced at providing support emotional/bereavement support or counselling for families.

If you think you or your child would benefit from talking to a counsellor you can find a local qualified counsellor using Children’s hospices and local children’s palliative care teams can also provide emotional support for you and your family.

If you feel you would benefit from a listening ear or want to make contact with other families going through similar experiences, do call our confidential helpline on 0808 8088 100 or via LiveChat on our website.

Child Bereavement UK

Child Bereavement UK aims to ensure that all families have access to the support and information they need when a child grieves or when a child dies. They provide confidential support, information and guidance to families and professionals, with professionally trained bereavement support workers available to take calls 9am-5pm Monday – Friday.
Tel: 0800 02 888 40

Childhood Bereavement Network

The Childhood Bereavement Network seeks to ensure that all children and young people in the UK, together with their families and other care givers, including professional carers, can easily access a choice of high-quality local and national information, guidance and support to enable them to manage the impact of death on their lives.
Tel: 020 7843 6309

The Child Death Helpline

The Child Death Helpline is a helpline for anyone affected by the death of a child of any age, from pre-birth to adult, under any circumstances, however recently or long ago.
Helpline: 0800 282 986 (If phoning from a mobile: 0808 800 6019)

The Compassionate Friends UK

The Compassionate Friends is an organisation of bereaved parents and their families offering understanding, support and encouragement to others after the death of a child or children. They also offer support, advice and information to other relatives, friends and professionals who are helping the family.
Helpline: 0345 123 2304

Family Lives

Family Lives provides professional, non-judgmental support and advice in a way that all members of the family can freely access through a 24 hour helpline, extensive online advice, email and live chat services, befriending services, and parenting/relationship support groups.
Helpline: 0808 800 2222


Samaritans provides confidential non-judgmental emotional support, 24 hours a day for people who are experiencing feelings of distress or despair, including those which could lead to suicide.
Helpline: 116 123

Support Line

Offers confidential emotional support to children, young adults and adults by telephone, email and post. They work with callers to develop healthy positive coping strategies, an inner feeling of strength and increased self esteem.
Helpline: 01708 765200

Winston’s Wish

Winston’s Wish was the UK’s first childhood bereavement charity. They lead the way in providing emotional and practical bereavement support to children, young people and those who care for them
Helpline: 0845 20 30 40 5

Click here to download this resource as a PDF.

Many parent support groups also provide emotional support and an opportunity to be put in touch with families going through a similar experience to you. Click here to view our factsheet on Parent Support Groups.


Family Resources