A lot is said about the injustice and tragedy in the world. But for every one of those there are selfless and hardworking people trying to make a difference. Each is one such charity. Having donated via our Climbing Frames UK Facebook page we were invited to attend an Open day for The Treehouse in Ipswich, perhaps made most famous when the Duchess of Cambridge made her first public speech as Each’s Royal Patron.
Of course there were questions about Kate, who was ‘so lovely’ and ‘headed straight for the children’, but once we were ushered in to hear about the brand new hospice and all its wonderful facilities the focus was on the huge achievement of Each and all its supporters.
The Treehouse is one of 3 hospices run by Each. All together they look after 132 families across Suffolk and Essex and a huge 72% of their income relies upon public support. These families will have children who are not expected to reach 21 and the hospices cater for children from birth to 19 years old. The wonderful thing about Each is they work with the entire family to improve their lives and well-being. Siblings are considered and parents are assisted along with the actual children themselves. They offer short break care where parents may want a small respite or some time away, and they also administer care in the community where Each nurses will go to wherever the family needs them, either in their own home or in hospital. Something that touched me most was the priority they gave to end of life care. Families can effectively move into the hospice whilst the mundane things like washing, cooking and even cups of tea are all done for them.
The facilities offered by The Treehouse are not only fantastic but deeply considered. Families, past and present, helped by Each were consulted prior to the Treehouse build and walking around the hospice you can tell. Everything and everyone has been thought of. There are sensory walls, play areas which welcome siblings, a dining area that can be divided up if families want to eat on their own, a sensory room, a music room, a woodland walk and superb outdoor play area as well as an area for reflection and quiet.
The thing that hit me most about visiting The Treehouse was its sense of fun. This may sound entirely incongruous to its function, but it was a joy to be there. Each work to focus on enjoying life and looking at the positives. The sensory room for example was somewhere I would like to spend my time, filled with twinkly lights, a projector wall, bubble tubes and music. There are even nights arranged for Mums and Dads where they can relax and have some fun.
To say I was blown away would be an understatement. Each have a long term aim to be open 24/7 365 days a year. Of course this means increasing their care team and continuing to receive donations from the public. Perhaps it’s hard to comprehend the importance of charities like Each until you are in the situation where you need them, but having heard first-hand the incredible work they do and have done, it’s hard to comprehend why you wouldn’t donate even the smallest amount to them.
To find out more about the work that Each do or to donate please click here