The social group offer has been designed by the team and the young people who access the offer. It began in August 2018, and has developed into its own specific service offer for those teenagers and young adults who can communicate and consent for themselves. The offer doesn’t include as much overnight respite, as the focus is more on social activities and community engagement.

The group, or groups depending on numbers, meet up once a month at our Liverpool site. We get some food, play some board games and video games, and generally chat and socialise. Together with these monthly sessions, the young people can access up to two weekend stays a year at the hospice, if they so choose.

These respite weekends are themed around their interests, and usually involve some form of competitive games or tailored activities such as the Liverpool Vs Wirral quiz, the 24-hour gaming marathon or a big day out somewhere cool.

The group is strengthened by a WhatsApp group, that all the young people join. It enables them to make new friendships, and speak directly with Andy and Alex who oversee the group. It is a safe space for young adults to develop friendships, wind up and laugh at each other, and empowers them to take control of their Claire House experience.

Emergency respite and end of life care can still be accessed as part of this offer, and we still encourage parents to contact Claire house if needed, but the onus is on the young adults to take responsibility for their own lives where possible.

Our offer starts from the age of 10 with the friendship group. This progresses onto the wider social group offer from the age of 14.
You can read more about each group below.

This social offer has further developed with the introduction of the friendship group. This is a starting point for younger children who have been referred to Claire House to develop a relationship with the hospice.

  • This gives parents and children / young people distinct bespoke offer.
  • This offer is more relevant and meets needs of young people.
  • It enables consistent relationships to be forged.
  • It offers peer support.
  • This group provides a safe introduction to Claire House – with Contacts / links to other services if required.
  • It is a safe, fun & informal environment.
  • It provides an emotional support network, and the opportunity for friendship building, at the point when their lives start to change, and they get used to the progression of their disability.

The social group starts from 14 and the wider Claire House offer is then available, including the therapeutic and community outreach groups.

  • Monthly social group based at Claire House Liverpool – 1st Saturday of each month usually 10am-2pm and 3pm-7pm.
  • Dedicated adolescent weekends for the young adults to come in together, providing unique activities, social interaction, friendship making, shared experiences, choice and control over activities
  • These will be organised and planned by young adults for young adults.
  • These weekends will be planned in advanced so all young adults and their families can plan ahead with a calendar of events over the year. Everyone will be able to access at least 2 weekends of respite a year.
  • WhatsApp group for communication with CH staff, safe space for chat between young adults.
  • This change in offer puts the young adult at the centre of our offer, because as they become older we want to ensure that the services and activities we provide are what the young adults need and want.

Both Andy and Alex have completed their introduction to counselling skills courses, and Alex’s role as a therapeutic support worker within the counselling team, means we are able to offer this new group. This group is very different from the social group, as the focus will be on exploring any thoughts or feelings the young adult may want to discuss. Sometimes young people don’t wish to talk, but gain benefit from listening to others. Some may just want to offer some supportive advice to their friends, while others might be going through a difficult time and will gain comfort from knowing they’re not alone.

Whilst Alex leads the group, Andy will be in another room with any parents who want to stay to talk. (sessions not as long as social group). This will give parents an opportunity to either speak with Andy about transition, or to speak with other parents potentially going through similar experiences, which we know can be really useful. We choose to do it the evening before the Saturday social group so we can then check in with the young adults the next day in case they had more questions. All group discussions will be led by their thoughts and feelings. We understand that some of the younger members of the group may not be ready for this, but the opportunity to join is still there if they feel they want it. Similarly, if you want to just turn up as a parent for the other session that’s fine too. It will be every other month and always the night before the Saturday social group date. This group is completely optional, it may not be right for some young people, but we feel that it is an offer worth trying, to further support our teenagers and young adults from a holistic well-being perspective.

Some of the teenagers and young adults can find it hard to feel comfortable in a large and sometimes noisy group, especially if new to the group or if they are going through some difficulties of their own. This group will be a session where we all meet at a cinema with own parents/PA’s staying, we will buy the tickets and maybe even some popcorn, you guys just have to turn up. Andy and Alex can then say hello, see if you need us for anything and then all enjoy a good film. Hopefully it will help some of the group who don’t necessarily get as much from the Saturday social sessions and parents can still get a bit of support if needed. This will be offered on a quarterly basis across the year.

(wheelchair relay races for the Claire House Olympics)


We asked some of the current members why they love the group and what they get from being a part of it.


It has helped me be more confident in all the things I do or places I go. I have made more friends, it’s also made me want to be better at FIFA so I can beat everyone; which worked and it has made me feel a lot happier – Liam (18)



The lads group and weekends mean a great deal to me as I can spend time with people who understand me and I can learn from others with the same condition, and ask their advice and opinions. I also enjoy the social side of going to the groups and having a laugh. I feel without the help from Andy and Alex and the staff from Claire House this would not be possible for me to spend time away from home and gain more confidence and independence, thanks for all your help organising and planning the Events, Thanks. Jordan (21)




I enjoy coming to the groups because I like playing all the games and meeting new people, this is helping my self-confidence and working towards talking more. Dillon (17)


I really enjoy going to the group, I like that I’m with lads that have the same condition as me. Alexander (17)

If you have any queries, or need anymore information about our Social Group offer, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.

You can contact Andy Curtis at Claire House, via email on or
Or by phone on 0151 334 4626, or 07860438036