8 FebThrough the eyes of a child

CEO Lyn Gould gave this recent speech at a supporters event in ChangSha. We wanted to share it with you all to help you understand the vision of Butterfly Children’s Hospices and to tell you exactly what your support means to us.

Through the eyes of a child.

When a baby is born their eyes are dim – unpracticed at viewing the world outside the womb.

Our dream for a child/baby is that they will open their eyes and ears to loving sights and sounds, their parents loving eyes looking into theirs, the sounds of their voices gently telling them of love and care, making the child feel secure and confident as they grow through their early years.

Harsh reality is that babies are born in many different circumstances and our rather romantic notions of magical childhoods are not true for all children. Illness, poverty, and war are just 3 of the causes of loss of the magic and the introduction of suffering into their lives.

It is said that if we could all see the world through the eyes of a child we would see magic all around us.

The hundreds of children’s eyes I have looked into over the last 24 years have not been full of magic and wonder. They have been lifeless, dull – speaking without words of loss, trauma, emotional and physical hurt. The majority of the children have been non verbal, unable to speak through illness or disability.

When I look into their eyes I wonder what they have already experienced in their short lives, what has made them lose hope? Unable to speak for themselves of their experiences – even if they had the vocabulary to express the depth of their suffering. I wonder what has happened to their parents? What of their suffering and loss of the beautiful child they longed for? Their hopes and dreams of a family gone. What of their suffering?

Harsh reality is that for adults it is hard to face the reality of this unmagical situation.

We want to think that all children have a life of security in a family, fun, enough food, play, education in a country with clean air, peace and harmony.

So the easier thing is to look the other way, to shed a few tears and feel a bit better as we carry on with our own problems in our own worlds.

But as John Donne wrote in 1624 – ‘No man is an island entire of itself; every man is a piece of the continent, a part of the whole’.

In the Butterfly Home we try to see life through the eyes of the child .

What does this child like, what is good for this child, what makes him smile, what makes him peaceful when he sleeps? What makes his body comfortable? What brings life to his days?

 At national and international level BCH advocates for sick and dying children to get the care and comfort they need. For their families to have the support they need to be able to care for the child through their shortened lives.

What you are giving the children through your support is the opportunity for physical comfort, security and safe arms to care for him, knowledge that they will be fed when they are hungry, held when they are crying, safe when they sleep, cleaned when they have a dirty nappy, comforted when they hurt or feel sick, loving eyes to affirm his worth, the ability to trust people and magical experiences. 

Contact info@butterflyhospice.org to find out ways in which you can support us, no matter where you are in the World.


Butterfly Children’s Hospices wouldn’t be able to do the work it does without your support. Please consider donating to help this invaluable cause to continue changing lives.

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