Directors of Queenscourt Hospice in Southport are appealing to local people for their support. Pictured are (from left): Dr Karen Groves, Medical and Education Director; Helen Birch, Director of Nursing Services; and Debbie Lawson, Corporate Services Director.

During Dying Matters Week, which this year had the theme of Dying to be Heard, Queenscourt Hospice in Southport highlighted an innovative communications course that it created and ran for its volunteers just before the pandemic struck.

Queenscourt has over 600 volunteers, who are a core part of its Compassionate Community. It is vital that its volunteers feel confident in how they communicate with patients and their families whilst carrying out their vital volunteering roles, as conversations within a palliative care setting can so easily allay or heighten fears with a single word or phrase.

From feedback Queenscourt received, its volunteers felt they would benefit from some of its clinical expertise, particularly around communication skills.

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A £10,000 grant from the Medicash Foundation enabled the hospice to develop and deliver a pilot Compassionate Communications course facilitated by Dr Karen Groves, Medical & Education Director at Queenscourt.

“The positive feedback from the pilot course means that we will be able to roll the Compassionate Communications Course out to all of our 600 volunteers at Queenscourt,” said Katy Pellow, Volunteers Coordinator.

“The development and delivery of the course would not have been possible without a grant from the Medicash Foundation, and we are deeply grateful for their support.”

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