Rowans Hospice

Rowans Hospice
Wendy Groombridge

‘Help for carers at the Rowans gave me a chance to relax and also a real sense of support’

Wendy Groombridge and her sister Carol Noyce have become familiar faces at the Living Well Centre, taking part in the arts and craft sessions. On Carers’ Right Day, which includes in its key aims raising awareness of the needs of carers, Wendy shares her experiences as a primary carer, talking about how the Rowans has supported her and highlighting a need that will resonate with all carers – the time to be herself.
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Myra Johnson with her son Trevor before their abseil at the Spinnaker Tower

‘David knew that he’d be looked after and cared for at the Rowans’  

When Myra Johnson’s husband David was readmitted to the Rowans Hospice for end-of-life care, he told her he wasn’t frightened – he knew it was a place where he’d be looked after and cared for. Here Myra kindly shares her story, which shows how Rowans Hospice offers support to patients with life-limiting illness and carers throughout every stage of their journey and into bereavement.  
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Comedian Rory Bremner addresses the crowd during the handing over ceremony at The Rowans Hospice, Purbrook in August 1994

How Rowans Hospice was built by the community for the community  

It was 1994 that saw the opening of a dedicated hospice for Portsmouth and the surrounding area. It also marked the success of the community working together collectively to address a community need. The actual campaign for the Hospice started in 1972, headed up by a group of nurses from Somers Town Health Centre who worked tirelessly to get the need of a local hospice known.  
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Irene Shenton and Daphne Bromback

Holistic approach of the Rowans aims to reduce stress levels  

Stress is natural response for both patients and those around them when faced with the diagnosis of life-limiting illness. If stress gets overwhelming, this can have serious negative effects. Our holistic approach to hospice care means that at the Rowans we go beyond just treating the physical diagnosis of a patient. We also care for the patient, their carer and their family’s emotional, spiritual and psychological suffering. We offer support, advice and services from diagnosis; endeavouring to be alongside patients, carers and their family every step of the way. This approach is clearly evident through the services offered at Rowans Living Well Centre. From well-being, social and skills groups to creative and complementary therapies, the centre provides a haven for people affected by life limiting and progressive illness and those who support them. The nurses, staff and volunteers that run the centre all focus on helping people to live well. Key to this is relieving the stress during a very stressful time. Here Registered General Nurse Helen Slater, local artist and Arts & Crafts Group volunteer Nicki Turner and Irene Shenton, who attends the Living Well Centre, share their experiences of the centre.  
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Roger 'Biff' Pearce with his wife Sarah, who was cared for at the Rowans Hospice

‘I can never thank the Rowans staff enough for what they did’

Roger ‘Biff’ Pearce took part in the Great South Run in memory of his beautiful wife Sarah and to raise money for Rowans Hospice. He wanted to make sure anyone in the local community facing a similar experience would have access to the support he and Sarah found so vital. This is also why he wants to share their story.
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Sister Helen Boxall at Rowans Hospice

‘I can’t imagine working anywhere else’, says Rowans nurse 

According to the American Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average number of years that people have worked for their current employer is 4.6. But  Helen Boxall, who has just been appointed Sister at Rowans Hospice, has worked there since it opened its doors in 1994. So what made her want to work in a hospice and why she has stayed for nearly 25 years?  
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