Winston's Wish Residential

Winston's Wish runs residential weekends for bereaved children and young people aged 6 to 18, that is both challenging and fun.

The weekends involve practical and creative activities that encourage teamwork, building confidence and self-esteem. This sets the scene for the children to begin sharing their own stories, to untangle and express a range of feelings, increase their knowledge about death and to continue their individual journeys towards understanding their grief.

Working alongside professional staff and highly trained volunteers, children are given the opportunity to share their individual stories with others in their small group, gain information about what happened through a question-and-answer session with a doctor, take special time to remember the person who has died, explore safely some of the more challenging feelings and responses they may be experiencing and develop ways of looking to the future.

The residential weekend I photographed was focused on children who had lost a parent through suicide, murder and manslaughter. 

I only spent a few hours with the children, but those hours were probably some of the toughest I've photographed. Having lost my own Mum when I was 11 years old, I found the whole experience very moving. The balloon release at the end was particularly touching. Each had a message from the child to the parent who had died. It was a poignant moment. 

If anyone wants to find out more about Winston's Wish or would like to make a donation please visit their website at