Encouraging Stories



The trails and tribulations which terminally ill patients and their families face during their illness are trying times. The deep sorrow which we face after the loss of a loved one, especially on special days of the year, or even certain days which that person shared with the family, like Sunday lunch, a walk on the beach and just being that phone call away. We have so many regrets and wish we could just have a moment with that person to say we love them.

You are not alone in your sadness.

We invite patients to tell their stories which we can publish on this page to help and encourage others to face their adversities and sorrows.
It could be a miracle which happened to you, a spiritual encounter, or on a lighter note, some humour, a funny event or a fun time which brought relief and light in the dark times of stress or bereavement.

If you or your family benefited through our services and we could make a difference in difficult times, please tell us and others about it, to encourage them.

Please contact Shamila Clothier on +27(0)39 682-3031 or e-mail: shamila@schospice.co.za for further details


Send your story to: Shamila Clothier, P.O. Box 504, PORT SHEPSTONE, 4240, KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa. Please include your name, surname and contact details.


Meet Kim: Cancer survivor speaks out – with no voice!

Although I have no voice, I want government to hear me.

I had cancer on my vocal chords about 16 years ago (28 years old at the time) and lived much longer than the average person that undergoes a tracheotomy and a laryngectomy. Although I am cancer free, I have lived with varying degrees of pain for most of these 16 years which affected my social life, my job, and my state of mind.

After many failed attempts of courses which included antibiotics, allergy medication and cortisone, I gave up and just accepted I was slowly dying. My stoma began to narrow and my breathing was impaired but I struggled on not even considering that there was help available.

A referral was written and I was sent to the local government hospital to see what could be done. No one really knew how to help. I did not want surgery so I opted for a trachy pipe, to keep my stoma(and airway) open. The pain got worse and the nerve damage went undiagnosed.

In November 2018 I ended up in hospice for three days, which was a blessing in disguise. Had I gone the normal hospital route my condition would not have been diagnosed for what it was. Many cancer patients don’t realise that palliative care is available at hospices and many hospitals do not have a proper Palliative Care department. The palliative care i received at hospice changed my life!

At South Coast Hospice, I was given the right medication and a pain management. I was also counselled and my progress was monitored and followed up on a regular basis. I am now pain free, can walk again and 2019 has been the best year of my life. I have energy and a positive outlook on life. I only take 1 trepelline daily for nerve damage and I also take 1 anti-inflammatory and between 2-4 tramadol. Initially I was told I may need to stay on 2 of each 3x a day but I managed to get it down to this. I was given the support I needed by a strong hospice team.

Why do I think Palliative Care should be available to every South African?

The main reason has to do with pain management. Chronic pain becomes so debilitating that people cannot hold down jobs or having fulfilling personal relationships. This is because chronic pain, left untreated destroys an individual slowly, physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually.

So many patients who survive life-threatening illnesses, like TB, AIDS, and cancer end up with varying degrees of pain that eventually affect our quality of life, in all areas.

Some hospitals are fortunate enough to have small palliative care programs starting up. But this is not good enough. Palliative Care needs to be highlighted as an essential part of the government healthcare policies.

We need to get government to make things happen. Our last Minister of Health signed off on a National Policy Framework and Strategy on Palliative Care that is meant to be fully in place by 2022.

Let’s hold them accountable!

Palliative care is cost effective and must be adequately funded to strengthen health systems and transform people’s lives. Here is another testimony of a patient who shares her views on the importance of accessing care without barriers.



Fallen Friends hand over of appreciation certificate.