Losing a loved one or a spouse is an incredibly traumatic experience – but when the circumstances involve murder, the effect on a family can be devastating. And yet this is the circumstances Mrs W – who has worked for a carers group for a number of years – and her family faced when her husband was tragically murdered in an attack in late 2016. After the subsequent funeral costs came back higher than expected, Mrs W found herself left with two children and bills she could not afford to pay. Applications for bereavement benefit and social funding were declined, but after her colleague Brice helped to submit an application to the Care Workers Charity, a grant to pay off the funeral debts was approved. According to Brice, the grant has had a significant and immediate effect in improving the family’s quality of life and peace of mind.


How did you get involved with The Care Workers Charity?

“I was not aware personally of the Care Workers Charity. I was kindly informed by my case support worker who was able to explain to me how the CWC can help me as an individual.”


What were your first impressions and how did you feel when you first came to the charity?

“At first I was not very hopeful as I knew my circumstances were very traumatic and I was unsure if the CWC would be able to offer me any assistance. Also the time it took to get a response made me think I was not successful so I was very surprised when I received positive news from my case worker at Handsworth Carers Group.”


Has your life improved and do you feel you have got to a better place by receiving support?

“My life has improved a lot as I am no longer having anxiety about my late husband’s funeral debt which was having a serious impact on my mental state of mind. Also the funding granted for my daughters, who are still very much traumatised by their father’s death, has given them hope that support is available for families like ourselves – after such devastating and life-changing events that have had a huge impact on all of us since last year [2016]. The support from the CWC was excellent and has enabled me to now focus on my children and building our lives back slowly.”


Where would you be if you hadn’t received support?

“If it wasn’t for the CWC I honestly don’t know what would have happened to my family and I as we were not only suffering mentally and physically, but we had very limited support and I would say that my mental health would have got worse. The support and reassurance from the service has been second to none and I appreciate the kind consideration to award my family with a grant which has been life changing for all of us.”


Where do you see yourself in the future?

“I see myself raising my children and supporting them to have a good quality of life. The trauma will take time however I strongly believe we will all be okay in the future as time is a healer.”


What advice would you give to someone who was looking for similar support?

“I would advise anyone who is in need and fits the criteria for the CWC to apply. And not to give up – when one door closes another may open. Patience is also importance as I can also appreciate that the charity may receive large volumes of applications for various reasons and will help and support when and where they can.”


Is there anything else you would like to say?

“I would just like to say a huge thank you to all the staff and managers at the CWC who were able to help my family and I to live again after I lost hope in everything. I now see that charities can and do help families in need.”


Although Mrs W’s story is a tragic one, we are delighted we were able to help her in her time of need. It’ll take the family a long time to recover from this tragedy, but with support and reassurance Mrs W will no doubt give her children the quality of life they deserve…