When a child dies

The death of a child is devastating and every experience is unique. Having information about what to expect and knowing what support is available may help you to prepare, think about your wishes and access good support.

At Derian House Children’s Hospice we are here for you. Our family support team will be on hand to help you and your family for as long as you need us – for both practical and emotional support. In this pack we will offer information about some practical matters, such as registering your child’s death and funeral planning.

How we can help...

Sunflower Rooms

Our special sunflower rooms are where your child can stay as an alternative to a funeral home. This enables children to remain at the hospice after death giving the opportunity for family members to leave their child in a safe and familiar environment. By adding items such as pictures, toys, bedding and photographs, the room can be made more personal for your child – a home from home. Our sunflower rooms enable you to spend time saying goodbye at your own pace in an informal and supportive environment until the funeral. Children who have died at home or in hospital can also rest in the sunflower rooms.

You and your family will be allocated a family flat within the hospice. This will give you the option to stay overnight at the hospice should you wish to. You may prefer to remain at home and visit – whichever suits your needs best. 

Should you wish for your child to stay at home, we are able to support you to enable this wherever possible. Our family support team can offer you guidance and support whatever your choice.

Family flats

If you choose to lay your child to rest in one of our sunflower rooms, you will have the option to stay at the hospice if you wish.

Our chefs can provide you with lunch and dinner during your stay and you can choose to eat in our communal dining area, or in your flat.

Bereavement support


Stepping Stones
This is offered to parents approximately three to six months following the death of your child, although the timing will take into account the needs of the family. The group is invite only and meets monthly over a six-month period. This gives parents the opportunity to meet other bereaved parents in an informal setting and offer peer support. The sessions are facilitated by two members of the family support team.

Bereaved Dads Group
This is a place for dads who have lost a child, to meet in a relaxed, safe and welcoming space, and will be facilitated by the family support team. This takes place once a month in the evening.

Bereaved Mums Group
This will take place once a month, and is a place for bereaved mums to meet in a relaxed, safe and welcoming space, and will be facilitated by the family support team.


We support siblings in a number of ways after they have lost their brother or sister. 

derian house


We want to make sure that grandparents feel supported and give them spaces to share their experiences and memories.