Bala's story

Bala Vekaria’s parents were cared for by St Luke’s and she shares their journey with the hospice.

‘Mum had been in hospital for 3 months and her condition did not improve. As a family we decided we wanted mum to spend her last few weeks at home rather than in a hospital. We were all quite anxious and nervous about taking care of her as she was unable to do anything for herself.

The staff from St Luke’s Hospice at Home service took the time to show us how to do things for mum, so that we were confident in doing them when they were not there. They made this difficult time easier with their compassion, advice and support. Sadly mum passed away in September 2010. In 2011 we took part in our first Midnight Walk, in memory of our mum and to support the  work that St Luke’s Hospice do.

In 2014 our dad was diagnosed with bowel cancer. Whilst undergoing chemotherapy, he was referred to St Luke’s for complementary therapies to help manage his pain. He was quite reluctant to go at first, but after his first session and seeing how friendly and supportive the staff were, he actually looked forward to his weekly appointments. The staff were warm, sensitive and caring to my father’s needs and listened to what he had to say.

Over the years we have managed to encourage work colleagues and friends to join in and participate in the Midnight Walk. They have all said what a brilliant night it is and it’s such a bonus that they have also helped raise money for a worthy cause. My family and I take part every year to show our appreciation. Mum, Dad and Gran supported many charities and good causes throughout their lives and we will continue to do this in their name and to keep their memory alive.’