The Kinderhospiz Hospice in Dusseldorf is a home for children living with incurable and life-limiting illnesses. The hospice also support families whilst their sick children are residents, offering them the assistance and help they need. The home caters for up to eight children and their families at a time. Siblings and parents of its residents are provided with free accommodation and round-the-clock psychosocial support. Although some of the hospice funding is covered by patient health and nursing care insurance, the charity relies heavily on public and private donations.
As children staying at Kinderhospiz Hospice reach adolescence, they find the environment is not age appropriate for their age group. As a result these young adults are not getting the respite and autonomy they need, to lead as normal and dignified life as possible. The only alternative is an adult hospice, which can only look after these young people in the very final stages of their lives. In view of this Kinderhospiz Hospice decided to build a dedicated Youth Hospice to offer adolescents a suitable home in a comforting, familiar place for the remainder of their lives.
A donation from ICAP Frankfurt in 2015 has supported the construction of the new Youth Hospice. Building works began in spring 2016 and Kinderhospiz Hospice is hoping all young residents will have moved in by autumn 2017.
The new facility is 1,038 m2 and the site is broken down into 43 rooms. The main objective of the youth area is to create as much freedom as possible for young residents. To allow complete mobility all rooms are open to electric wheelchairs, automatic doors and is step free. The most important rooms are on the ground floor, with five apartments for the young people where they can relax and live more independently. Residents also have their own bathrooms and a comfortable sitting room for time spent with friends or guests. In the basement, there is a common room where the young residents can enjoy arts and crafts or be creative. There is also a music therapy room and a recreational room where residents can play various sports. Another radical improvement for the adolescent residents is a space for family, guests and friends to stay on the first floor. The middle of the new building includes an atrium, with a beautiful winter garden and the hallways provide space for relaxing.
The rest of the new facility is made up of various schooling, counselling (for bereavement groups) and office rooms. The high quality teaching and healing standards Kinderhospiz Hospice offer is critical to the charity’s objectives. The young people staying in the new youth ward have completely different requirements and it really important that they form their own identity. The new youth hospice and dedicated caregivers helps them try to achieve this.
The new facility, supported by ICAP Charity Day in Frankfurt enables the adolescent residents to escape the often isolating and depressing reality of being confined to a hospice, and has enabled them to create positive memories during an emotional and challenging time.