“Empowering Families” is part of our statement and very important to us as every member of Making Families Count has either lost a family member to traumatic bereavement or serious harm, or has a background of working with traumatically bereaved families. This means we are uniquely placed to understand the problems faced by harmed families who have suffered a traumatic bereavement, either through medical negligence, poor care, mental health homicide, domestic homicide or suicide.
We were fortunate to build a relationship of trust and honesty over four years with the Trust that was maintained even when things went seriously wrong (mother of a young person with Learning Disability)
We have recently begun work on our first Families project using funding from the National Lottery Covid-19 fund. We are working with families who have been shielding during Covid-19. We will be using on-line meetings to hear their voices and share their experiences using creative writing and arts. The learning from this will be used to create resources for families and social care professionals.
We need to be careful we don’t buy into a “them and us” culture regarding families. We’re all family members and may all need treatment and support at some point in our lives (family member of MFC and NHS patient)
From 2021 we will be running online training for families around specific aspects of dealing with the aftermath of a traumatic death in the family. In the future, when it’s permitted, we are also planning to run face-to-face peer group support events for families.
I longed for better care and fewer deaths as proof of effective learning. Nothing can bring him back, but, knowing that his story is helping to prevent avoidable deaths brings me the greatest comfort (mother of son who died in acute care)
A TO Z OF INFORMATION FOR FAMILIES
We hope our A to Z of information for Families will provide you with some helpful signposting. No-one comes to this experience knowing what to do and we know that for each person, your experience will be unique to you, but we hope that knowledge we have gained through hard experience, may help you at this very sad and stressful time. Our A-Z has information about advice, support, useful organisations and charities, as well as information about the various types of investigations you may experience.