Meet our essential workers

I’ve only worked at Very Special Kids since November 2019 but it very quickly felt like my second home. My role is pretty much what you would think when you hear “personal care worker”, but I emphasise the role of caring. Whilst the physical care needs are important, so too are the emotional and psychological. I try to make sure these kids are happy and comfortable, and know they’re cared for. I always get the response “Oh wow, that work would be so tough”. I always respond “It’s so special. I’m very lucky”. The name of Very Special Kids truly is the perfect name.

Due to COVID-19, a lot of the Very Special Kids children and families are even more isolated and vulnerable. It’s such a disruptive and anxiety provoking time. I can only imagine the ripple effect COVID-19 is having on the Very Special Kids families and not being able to access our normal therapies and support services.

I’m grateful that we can still provide support to Very Special Kids children and families, albeit in some different ways to usual.Day to day, we still practice normal hygiene routines and infection control, but some tasks require additional steps and precautions. The biggest difference is the lack of hugs!

End-of-life care at Very Special Kids means supporting a child to be as comfortable as possible, and still have their days filled with love and dignity. It’s also about supporting the family and helping them create special memories together. It’s so important to be able to provide end-of-life care at Very Special Kids, because children and their families shouldn’t go through such a vulnerable time alone.

Generally speaking, in a culture where we shy away from death, we’re unaware of the intricacies of how to best care for someone at their end of life. Just like at a birth, having support from people who have experience and knowledge in this area is so valuable. I find it a real honour when children and their families let us in to their lives to be involved in those final days.

To help Ella and the team provide unique, personal care to families, please donate here.