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Together for Short Lives

Together for Short Lives is the leading UK charity for all children with life-threatening and life-limiting conditions and all those who support, love and care for them. We support families, professionals and services, including children’s hospices. Our work helps to ensure that children can get the best possible care, wherever and whenever they need it.

We want every child and their family to have:

  • The right information from the moment of diagnosis so they can make choices about the care they receive
  • Easy access to services so that they can spend more time together
  • The best quality care
  • Reliable support now and throughout their journey

Help for Families

Finding out that your child has a life-limiting or life-threatening condition can be an incredibly distressing and confusing time. We often hear from families that they fail to get the information they need about what help and support is available locally.  We want to address this and have developed a range of resources to support you and to help you get the most of your local services and enjoy your time together as a family.

The Together for Families Helpline provides information for families, carers and professionals.  It is open for anyone who looks after or knows a child or a young person with a life-limiting condition. 

Families can also call the Helpline to access our Advocacy Support Service which can take referrals from any family living in England or Wales who would benefit from the support of a legal professional, acting as a volunteer advocate to assist them in getting the support they need.

We have a family community that you may like to join where you can receive our newsletter, read about other families' experiences, share your own family story and learn about how to get more involved in the work of Together for Short Lives. 

Helping Children who need Palliative Care to access education

Together for Short Lives has published an interactive online resource for education providers in England. Free to download and use, our resource will help you answer the following questions:

  • What is children’s palliative care? Who needs it?
  • What do children with life-limiting conditions need to help them access an education? Does this vary according to different conditions, and how?
  • What should education providers do to meet these needs?
  • What are they obliged to do? What should they do?

Our resource offers information relevant to:

  • governors and trustees
  • heads and senior managers
  • SENCOs
  • classroom teachers
  • teaching assistants
  • school nurses 

Our resource aims to guide and inform providers of education for children and young people up to the age of 25. It is not relevant for providers of higher education. It has been funded by the Department of Education as part of Together for Short Lives’ two-year project to improve the extent to which children’s palliative care is engaged in the special educational needs and disability (SEND) reform in England.

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Last updated 07/12/2021