We are delighted to announce that our charity is expanding. We are providing more support than ever, with new Local Contacts and Groups, a fully staffed Telephone Helpline, more Supportive Weekends, a thriving Online Forum and several new Facebook supportive groups. To manage all this, we are making some changes:
We are excited at the changes underway in our charity and wish to thank everyone who has helped us make it all happen - all of you who donate to TCF, fundraise for us and most of all our fantastic bereaved parent support volunteers.
The first retreat for parents bereaved by suicide, addiction or substance use was held at Woodbrooke, in Birmingham, from 11-13 July. 52 parents came together, with 12 TCF volunteers, to share stories of their children, talk, cry and laugh together, find friendship, support and comfort. What a wonderful few days - filled with so much inspiration, hope, and understanding.
We received a many emails and letters about the retreat, and we have reprinted a few of these here to give you a flavour of this special gathering.
We hope to repeat this retreat in 2017 so look out for more details and dates.
Now you can show your support for the work of our charity with our new range of Compassionate Friends merchandise.
Just in are...
All item prices include packing and postage to a UK address.
(All these items will also be available to purchase at our retreats and other events).
UPDATE on 20th June: The funeral of Joe Lawley will take place at Nuneaton Crematorium on Thursday 7th July 2016 at 2.15 pm.
UPDATE on 23rd June: Family flowers only please; donations if desired for The Compassionate Friends, may be sent to W Smith & Sons Funeral Directors, Avenue Road Nuneaton, Warwickshire CV11 4JT.
It is with very great sadness that we learned of the death of Joe Lawley earlier today - Monday 13 June. Joe was one of the Founder parents of The Compassionate Friends.
Joe was admitted to hospital on 3 June and his wife Iris was with him when he died.
He will be greatly missed and we send our love to Iris and their daughters at this sad time. Without them, and the other Founder members, TCF would not have existed.
On hearing this sad news, our Chair of Trustees, Dr Margaret Brearley commented: "Joe and Iris, together with the Hendersons and Simon Stephens, created TCF in 1969 – now a worldwide group of caring organisations uniquely comforting bereaved parents. Their shared companionship and informal mutual support in their overwhelming grief allowed them to turn outwards to seek other similarly grieving parents, with the result that literally hundreds of thousands of grieving parents have been given comfort and friendship – and in many countries – all this inspired by their example and their words".
Marcus presented The Compassionate Friends with a huge (literally!) cheque for over £4,500 raised by sponsorship and donations towards his amazing run for TCF. Also joining Marcus was his mum, Christina Ford, who did so much to promote the Marathon run and raise funds for our charity. Christina also runs a support group for bereaved parents in Hythe, Kent.
It was wonderful to be able to thank Marcus and Christina in person for their support, and a heartfelt thank you to everybody who sponsored Marcus on his 26 mile run through London. We are immensely grateful.