Joining Forces with Evelina Children's Heart Organisation

Rainbow Trust Children’s Charity has partnered with Evelina Children’s Heart Organisation (ECHO) in London, with the aim of bridging the gap between the medical care that families receive in hospital and the social palliative care they receive in the home or community.

Investment from ECHO and a generous donation has enabled us to employ Rainbow Trust’s first Cardiac Support Worker, Diana Neagu, who will work closely with ECHO to ensure that families whose children have terminal or life threatening heart conditions receive additional support, both in the hospital setting and in the community.

Anne Harris, Director of Care at Rainbow Trust said: “This partnership will allow us to support more families in the way that they need it, when they need it. Having a seriously ill child throws every facet of life into disarray and it is quite often impossible to keep life moving whilst in the depths of dealing with your child’s ill health. Our Family Support Workers are side by side with families to assess what would make life function more smoothly and then deliver that support, wherever the family needs it.

“The appointment of a specialist Cardiac Support Worker enables us to take a step closer to providing truly joined up care both in and outside of the hospital setting, providing expert care and support whilst working hand in hand with some of the country’s leading cardiac specialists.”

Samantha Johnson, Director of Operations for ECHO said: “This is Evelina Children’s Heart Organisation’s first and biggest investment of its kind and we are very excited about the potential of this partnership. ECHO would like to offer families a sense of security after they have left hospital and be able to offer help where it is needed at that time.”

ECHO was set up 31 years ago by parents who identified a shortfall in the support given to families with a child with a serious heart condition. The organisation was created to offer moral and emotional support and guidance.

Samantha continued: “When a child leaves hospital, it can be very stressful as families settle into a busy life of hospital appointments and getting used to a very different routine taking care of a “heart child.” ECHO provides help in the community, on the ward and runs a number of programmes aimed at supporting families and this new partnership with Rainbow Trust will further strengthen the support available to the families who are treated in London.”