Family Services

Coming to terms with serious illness and dying can be difficult and distressing for all concerned.

When someone is seriously ill, everyone around him or her is affected. The patient and family/whanau may deal with a whole host of emotions, from anger to helplessness, feeling frightened or depressed.

Through our Family Services team, Hospice Waikato provides patients, families/whanau with an opportunity to identify and deal with all aspects relating to the emotional, mental and spiritual impact of terminal illness. The team includes counsellors, social workers and a spiritual care-coordinator.

You are warmly invited to attend any of our therapeutic programmes and to bring your caregiver or a friend with you. Attend a session or two, bring your lunch and enjoy the companionship of others in our peaceful supportive environment. Our hospitality areas offer tea and coffee.

Counselling for Adults

Counselling for adults is a gentle, respectful process that is confidential.

Counselling provides:

  • Personal one to one sessions provided either in our counselling room at our offices or at home as needed.
  • Therapeutic support groups for patients and for caregivers, held periodically throughout the year
  • Family and relationship counselling
  • Skilled support volunteers are able to spend time listening in a warm and supportive way.
  • Guidance and assistance to individuals and families in communicating with each other in times of severe emotional distress.  People within our service have found that counselling can reduce pain, anxiety, fear and stress, allowing for relaxation and a greater sense of meaning.
  • A supportive partnership with individuals and their issues.  It helps them to access their own resources, wisdom and strengths so they can find new answers and ways to live.
  • A time for listening and talking for emotional expression and for greater personal awareness.
  • Creative use of art, expressive writing, music and play

Counselling for Children and Young People

Rainbow Place offers a specialised service using creative and expressive therapies.

Grief and Bereavement Support

Of all the losses faced in life, the death of someone close can leave the emptiest feelings of loneliness and pain.  While these feelings are a natural part of the grieving process, there may be times when it seems as if there is no way through.  Sometimes talking in confidence to someone outside of family / whanau and friends, who understand the process, may help lift the burden and ease the pain.

Because each person’s grief is different, our various bereavement services are attuned to the specific needs of a family member or friend.

Bereavement care from Hospice Waikato includes individual support and counseling for adults and children, groupwork, regular newsletters, volunteer visitors and an annual memorial service.

Bereavement Support Group Meetings

Group meetings for our bereaved are held throughout the year:

  • An informal ‘drop in’ bereavement group is held at 10 am on the first Tuesday of each month
  • ‘A Healing Journey’ is held three times a year consecutively over six weeks.

Both groups are held at our offices – 344 Cobham Drive, Hillcrest, Hamilton. Contact us to register.

Social Work

The Social Worker is available to:

  • Undertake a social assessment in partnership with patients and families to assist in meeting social, emotional, psychological, financial and spiritual needs.
  • Provide information and help families access resources.

Social work support can be provided from initial contact through to the time of death, during the bereavement period and beyond. Issues that can arise are:

  • Finances
  • Benefit or pension queries / entitlements
  • Housing, residential care placements
  • Carer support
  • Advocacy
  • Practical supports
  • Working through family difficulties
  • Resource finding, linking in with other agencies
  • Legal issues such as power of attorney, making a will
  • Funeral planning

The Social Worker is also able to assist with facilitating family meetings as they are required. Requests for Family Support Volunteers and the Life Review Service are arranged by the Social Worker.


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