In support of our Forget Me Not Appeal, here is Vivek sharing why he is supporting the Hospice...

My dad was my strength; he was always filled with positivity and could light up any room he walked into. But in 2015, he was diagnosed with secondary throat cancer and I thought my family would never be the same again.

I felt overwhelmed with a sense of responsibility of looking after my mum and fulfilling my dad’s wish of seeing my sister’s wedding - especially as Asian weddings can be extravagant.

However, thanks to their active presence within the community, Birmingham St Mary’s Hospice offered us ongoing support throughout my dad’s illness, which enabled him to pass away peacefully at home surrounded by his family in November 2016.

We were the first family to use the Hospice’s new Satellite Clinic, which meant my dad was referred very quickly and could spend those final weeks doing more of the things he wanted. 

I cannot thank the nurses and doctors at Birmingham St Mary’s Hospice enough; their patience and care was second to none. We were treated like family, including my grandparents, who the nurses always made an effort to communicate with, despite the language barrier.

I can also see how my mum benefited from the bereavement support the charity provided after my dad’s passing and she appreciated they didn’t treat her as though she was just another number.

We are a close-knit family, but sadly, there are many others who don’t have that support. We wanted to do something to give back to Birmingham St Mary’s Hospice, so they can continue to provide stability to families, as they did with mine. That is why I have chosen to support the Forget Me Not appeal so I can always be reminded of my dad, my strength.

Thank you Vivek for sharing your story with us and for supporting Birmingham St Mary's.

If you’d like to share a memory or a story, please email forgetmenot@birminghamhospice.org.uk.

To read more stories, visit www.birminghamhospice.org.uk/forget-me-not-stories.