The UK has had the highest number of COVID-19 healthcare worker-related deaths in the world and since the start of the pandemic over 850 healthcare workers have sadly passed of COVID-19, many leaving children and families behind.
On the ten-month anniversary of the first UK lockdown, we launched the Families Programme, dedicated to supporting the children and the families of NHS staff who have died from COVID-19 during the pandemic. The initiative developed in response to direct feedback from healthcare workers who expressed fear and anxiety about the impact their work may have on their lives and the lives of their loved ones. We want to remind healthcare workers how much they are valued and that we stand behind them and their families as their supporters and allies.
We are acutely aware of how difficult losing a parent or loved one can be, so the Families Programme is dedicated to providing those families with access to free counselling, respite breaks, mentoring services and guidance in career and education. Our aim is to support families during the grieving process and into the future.
The Families Programme has already started supporting the Sazuze family who sadly lost Elsie Sazuze, a 44-year-old care home nurse, after she contracted the virus in April. She left behind her husband Ken, son Andrew, 22, and daughter Anna, 16. So far we have been able to provide Ken and his family with specialist bereavement counselling through our partners Harley Therapy and have been able to pair Andrew with a mentor from accounting firm, Medics Money, helping him to secure an online internship with a global accounting and consultancy firm. We are also supporting the family in receiving help with probate matters from our excellent legal partners, Talbots law firm.
Ken Sazuze, husband to Elsie said in The Guardian,
“All of these things HWF is doing are keeping us going and giving us faith. My children continue to fight through their education. I’m proud of them and I’m so grateful for the miracle the charity is doing for us.”
We have also been fortunate enough to secure a partnership with the Landmark Trust who are known for their remarkable properties all over the UK & Europe. We are delighted to be able to offer families in our care a chance to respite in such beautiful architecture once the lockdown has lifted.
To donate to the HWF Families Programme Campaign, click here.
Families of healthcare workers who have lost a loved one due to Covid-19 and would like to inquire about the support available through the Families Programme should email firstname.lastname@example.org