About Winston’s Wish

We were the UK’s first childhood bereavement charity – supporting bereaved children since 1992.

As the first charity to establish child bereavement support services in the UK, we continue to lead the way in providing specialist child bereavement support services across the UK, including in-depth therapeutic help in individual, group and residential settings.

Winston’s Wish was established by Julie Stokes OBE, a clinical psychologist, in 1992 to meet the needs of bereaved children and their families. The idea took root when Julie visited the US and Canada on a Winston Churchill Travelling Fellowship. Having been inspired by the services she saw there, Stokes returned to the UK and set up Winston’s Wish.

Supporting You - Death Through Homicide & Death Through Serious Illness - Winston's Wish

A Child’s Grief

Since then we have understood the impact of bereavement at a young age and has developed a range of practical support and guidance on bereavement to children, their families and professionals via a national helpline and publications for all ages. We offer specialist support programmes for children affected by deaths related to murder, manslaughter, suicide or the military community.

We believe in a society where every bereaved child has access to support as and when they need it.

Get to know us better…


Year of foundation


calls to our Helpline in 2015/16


children are bereaved every single year in the UK


approximately two children under 16 are bereaved of a parent every hour


Regional hubs


Children supported in 2015/16


childhood bereavement in youth offenders can be 41% higher than national average


of 5 to 16 year-olds have experienced the death of a close friend of the family

More than 100

children are bereaved of a parent every day


Publications sold or distributed in 2015/16

1 in 25

young people have experienced bereavement of a parent or sibling


the number of children we reach every year through an array of services

Our Team

Our Trustees

Downloadable Information

Our Impact Report

Download here.

Living With Bereavement

Download here.

Reports & Accounts

Download here.

Media Enquiries

The Winston’s Wish press office is the first port of call for all media enquiries seeking advice and guidance about childhood bereavement.

Tel: 01242 515 157 (Mon – Fri, 9-5)
Mobile: 07894 204199 (out of hours)