Our therapies help children and families to address individual physical, emotional, cognitive, and social needs.

Our therapists work in a safe environment that supports confidence and individual abilities, enabling communication, self-expression, and interaction. Therapies aim to meet the child and family where they are in their journey, helping to maximise the quality of life.

We offer both individual and group sessions, which may be delivered in the hospice, at home, or at school. For those who prefer to meet virtually, we can also offer our services via Zoom

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This team represents physiotherapy and occupational therapy whose role it is to support Demelza’s three hospices and community care services, providing their expertise in working with babies, children and young people with complex needs and their families to maintain their safety, dignity and independence.

What do physical therapists do?

Demelza’s physical therapists work closely with families, community therapists, and other professionals from health, social and education services, where appropriate, to develop and deliver holistic therapy support for babies, children or young people receiving Demelza services.

A physical therapist may assess and advise on:

  • Positioning
  • Moving and handling
  • Equipment needs and ergonomic changes
  • Physical development
  • Daily living skills (for example personal care, play, dressing, feeding)
  • Respiratory physiotherapy

A physical therapist aims to promote independence, using the child’s strengths and abilities toward the task as far as possible. This involves helping to apply therapy recommendations consistently across all settings (eg how a child is moved and handled at both home and hospice).

Aquatic therapy is part of the provision at the Kent site, in the fully equipped hydrotherapy pool, complete with sensory toys, which can be used for both therapy, fun and relaxation.  

Demelza care staff will be supported by the physical therapist providing training, updates and direct support with how to best support babies, children and young people in Demelza’s care. The therapist will always work in liaison with the extended team working with the child and their family, and help to continue community treatment programmes.

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Virtual Music Groups

These last for 45 minutes and are suitable for the whole family. They take place on Thursday after school, Thursday evenings, Friday afternoons, and most Saturday mornings. They are run by a Music Therapist and consist of themed music and songs which range from gentle relaxing music to lively songs with actions. The therapist suggests items from around the home you can bring along for the session to make it a sensory experience. These groups are an opportunity to sing, dance, have fun, laugh and lessen those feelings of isolation. 

Summer Therapies programme

This runs for four weeks over the summer holidays and is open to families to come along to experience a creative therapy session in our art or music rooms. It is an opportunity to meet our therapists and find out more about creative therapy and how it may support your family.

Music Sensory Bags

Packs consisting of a Soundlink to 30 minutes of music. These bags are themed Spring, Summer, Autumn and Winter. Each track in the packs have a sensory item for your child to explore while listening. These bags are suitable for younger children and any young person who benefits from sensory experiences. Our sensory bags are posted to you or delivered to your home by one of our volunteers.

Little Dots

A stay-and-play group for under 5s for messy and sensory play, story times and social interaction whilst parents and carers can chat to each other. Currently offered within the Kent hospice, East Sussex hub and in the community, with groups in Dover and Tunbridge Wells. There are plans to expand this service into other areas.
Further groups are commencing in Dover and Tunbridge Wells and will be open to additional age groups and activity preferences.

Reflexology and Indian Head Massage

Reflexology can help to support children and young people affected by specific health challenges such as pain, muscle fatigue, circulation, constipation, poor sleeping patterns and nausea; they would never be used in place of conventional medical care

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