Health and wellbeing

Funding level: £1,001 to £5,000


The grant will fund our family support work, where we support multiple members of the same family who are bereaved through a fatal road collision through:
• 1-2-1 counselling support for adults and young people, primarily through weekly sessions in their own home
• Support for children and young people through age appropriate interventions including emotional support and play therapy to help them to understand and adjust to their loss
• Support for the whole family, to help them to grieve together and support each other

Family support will start in the immediate aftermath of the death of their loved one, helping them to cope with their loss, the shock and distress at the nature of the death, and to deal with the post mortem and other proceedings. The support continues for as long as it is useful, which can be up to two years, particularly if there are ongoing criminal or Coroner investigations. Support is provided by both our specialist staff and trained Counselling Volunteers.

The support helps people in a range of ways:
• Coping with the immediate trauma and shock
• Navigating through the unfamiliar world of Coroner investigations, media coverage etc.
• Coming to terms with their bereavement
• Adjusting to life in the longer term, without their loved one

As a result, families are less likely to face a family crisis as a result of the grief (relationship breakdown, behavioural problems in children, substance misuse etc.). Individuals will be less likely to suffer from mental and physical health problems and be more likely to adjust to life without their loved one. We realise that life will never be the same for the families that we work with, but with our support they will be able to cope with their loss, deal with the practical aspects of the death, and begin to move forward with their lives.

Quotes from families recently supported:
“The RVT experience (following the death of our son), has enabled us to talk to each other when at times we had both shut down emotionally towards each other and found it difficult to discuss how we were feeling. It enabled us to speak to each other through a third person, being able to express our emotions without the fear of rejection or an argument. As our trust and rapport with our counsellor grew, I found the sessions more supportive and were helping us to move forward.
At my lowest times it helped to have someone not within the family to express my thoughts and fears without fear of hurting them or reprisals.”

“Words cannot express my gratitude for all your support. You have journeyed with me through the darkest of times ... You helped me to realise that one day I would enjoy the simple things in life again and that this would not be a betrayal of my love for my son.”

“They rang me for one hour once a week and, it sounds ridiculous, but I lived for that phone call. If I hadn't had it, I think I'd have jumped off the balcony; it was all I had. The volunteers have heard it all before; they know the right things to say, they know how to help, and they absorb all your pain and it kept me going for another. They made me realise I wanted to get better, to get on with my life, and show people you can be happy again after terrible things have happened.”

Road Victims Trust

Location: Bedfordshire, United Kingdom

•The difference that we make to the lives of bereaved people – helping them to adjust to their life without their loved one.
•Our team of volunteers who support our families, undertaking a difficult role with commitment and care
•Families that we have supported returning in an Ambassadorial roles