“I’m here, I’m not going anywhere. You are not facing this alone” 

During COVID I worked in Intensive Care. The impact of seeing people during this time dying without those close to them, stressed to me the ever-important need for the right support at the end of life. For each individual to be in their preferred space, with their pain managed and their wishes met. This is what led me to hospice care, to help more people when they need us most.

Working in St Raphael’s community team is the first time I have nursed outside an acute hospital setting. It’s exactly where I want and need to be. It’s also the best team I’ve ever worked with.

We serve a community that is diverse and having equal access to a high standard of palliative care is vital. It stands for everyone.

There can be a lot of heartache behind the closed doors of our community. You just don’t know what people are going through. We aim to gain trust and rapport with our patients and their families, allowing us to deliver individualised, person-centred care.

For our patients, it’s not always about their illness, it’s about their fears surrounding their diagnosis and the impact this may be having on their loved ones. I think of a woman in the community who had custody of her grandchild. A huge part of my role was to support her and her family in planning for the future and ensuring that her wishes were met towards the end of her life.

We are the last point of call in many ways and we work hard to get it right. We can’t cure terminal illness but we can help people to live the very best life possible, helping to manage their symptoms and fears. For them to know, ‘I’m here, I’m not going anywhere, you are not facing this alone.’ 

Our Hospice lines are manned by our nurses 24/7. To know that we are there alleviates so much anxiety. We listen to people who are often in distress, share advice, signpost them where needed and work hard to make sure that people are truly seen. 


By sponsoring a St Raphael’s nurse today, you will help me and my fellow nurses make sure that more people live the fullest life they can, until the end. Even a small monthly gift today will help us to make a positive impact for people in your local community for months or years to come.

Meet Michelle Meet Helen Back