Julie Stokes' Story
Julie was a recently qualified psychologist when she applied for her Fellowship in 1992. At that time, bereavement care in the UK focused mostly on adults, and there was little or no research into the effects on children of the loss of a parent or close family member. Julie travelled to the USA and Canada looking at their systems for supporting bereaved children.
On her return she used the knowledge she had gained to set up the charity Winston's Wish, named in honour of Sir Winston, which has since become the UK's leading childhood bereavement organisation. Winston's Wish takes around 5,000 calls through its national Helpline every year, speaking to families, professionals and children. Through this service and the therapeutic support, website, workshops and group work it offers, the charity reaches 40,000 children and young people each year, who are affected by all forms of death including illness, accident, domestic violence or a knife, drug or alcohol related death.
In 2006 Julie received the OBE in recognition of her work for services to children and families. Julie now works as an Executive Coach.