Ty Hafan
When Cath and Tracey recognised that Ieuan was in the final stages of his short life, they knew that Tŷ Hafan would be there for them, helping them care for him and make the most of every precious moment.

Ieuan died at the hospice on January 23, five days after his fifth birthday. Although it was a distressing time for the family, they felt comforted knowing they were able to say goodbye to their son in the beautiful surroundings of the hospice with ‘Team Ieuan’ by their side.  

When Ieuan was a baby he suffered a brain injury which caused epilepsy, cerebral palsy, dysautonomia and blindness to his left eye. Ieuan had very complex medical needs and at eight months old Cath and Tracey, who are both registered nurses, became his foster parents.

From that moment forward, they showered him with love and affection and provided him with a life filled with laughter, happy memories and plenty of “cwtches”.

They were referred to Tŷ Hafan almost immediately and describe the charity’s care as “phenomenal”.

Tracey said: “The support has been immeasurable. Words cannot express the depth of what we’ve received. ‘Team Ieu’ were phenomenal – every single one of them. The happiness we experienced and the support we were given was incredible.”

Days before Ieuan died, he was given a beautiful giraffe lamp as a gift. The lamp would project shapes and different colours in his room. Although he couldn’t talk and had very little movement, Ieuan responded by smiling and vocalising at his giraffe lamp.  

“He absolutely loved it. He loved his lights and he loved his music. The gift was perfect for Ieuan,” said Tracey.

The couple stayed at the hospice for a few more weeks until they felt strong enough to return to their home in Neath.

“We held a celebration of Ieu’s life while we were at the hospice.  About 80 people turned up and we had tea and cake – it was wonderful. The bereavement support we’ve received has been absolutely fantastic; they have been there for us 24 hours a day, seven days a week,” said Tracey.

“Through Team Ieu’s support, we are now able to think about the future without our boy. We will foster another child who is life-limited. Ieuan was inspirational and amazing and has taught us so very much.”

Cath and Tracey raised £1,000 for Tŷ Hafan through donations at Ieuan’s celebration of life and funeral. The used some of the money to purchase lamps for each of the children's bedrooms and the self-contained flat at the hospice.

“We hope the children and young people will enjoy the lights as much as Ieuan. We can’t thank Tŷ Hafan enough and this is a small way we can make a difference to a truly wonderful charity,” said Cath.

  • With thanks to the Daisy and Jack store in Cowbridge for providing a discount on the cost of the lamps.