Sara Lee Trust
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Eligibility & Referrals


Our remit as a charity is to provide services to people affected by cancer and other life-threatening illnesses* in the Hastings and Rother area. The impact of a life-threatening illness varies from person to person and can be experienced at different times, with some needing more support through the course of their treatment, others once treatment is finished.

The high demand for our services means that we can generally only support those who meet the following criteria:
  • are receiving palliative or end-of-life care, or
  • are in active treatment for a life-threatening illness, or
  • are within 2 years of active treatment, if in remission, and
  • for whom equivalent mainstream services are not appropriate or adequate
We also accept referrals for carers and loved ones of patients under the same guidelines.


Our services prove to be most helpful to those who meet the above criteria and one or more of the following:
  • they have emotional or spiritual concerns regarding the illness and its effect on quality of life,
  • are coping with the side effects of treatment e.g. chemotherapy/radiotherapy,
  • need complementary symptom management e.g. pain, nausea, breathlessness, constipation, diarrhoea, tiredness, sleeplessness, poor appetite, or
  • in the case of the patient’s loved ones, are coping with the demands of the caring role and/or facing the prospect of bereavement.

Duration & Accessibility

  • Patients receiving complementary therapies will be offered an initial block of 6 sessions.
  • Carers/loved ones receiving complementary therapies will be offered an initial block of 3 sessions.
  • The number of counselling sessions will vary depending on individual need with some people finding just 1 or 2 sessions sufficient and others requiring longer-term psychotherapy.
  • Our mindfulness and yoga courses are open to patients and they run for a set number of weeks. Places are limited.
  • Our healthy and nurturing cooking courses are open to patients and carers/loved ones, and they run for a set number of weeks. Places are limited.
  • Our yoga maintenance classes, natural rhythms group and sanctuary days are open to patients on an on-going/ad-hoc basis subject to them still meeting the eligibility criteria and to availability.
  • Our Look Good Feel Better workshops are open to female patients. Places are limited to 1 workshop per patient during a 2-year period.
  • Our information & support sessions are open to patients and carers/loved ones, with the exception of certain specific sessions – e.g. Men & Cancer, Lymphoedema, etc.

* Life-threatening describes a condition that will most likely be fatal if untreated, and may still be fatal even if treated; as opposed to chronic, which describes a condition that is limiting, of long duration and generally slow progression.


Our services are accessed by referral from a healthcare professional (e.g. GP, nurse specialist, consultant). To refer patients or family members and carers for our services, please complete our Referral Form and, where relevant, the Home Visit Needs/Risk Assessment Form. These forms are also available through the DXS clinical referral portal. Referrals should be sent electronically to our secure email address:

On receipt of a completed referral form we will do the following:

  • Confirm receipt to the referrer using the email address provided.
  • Contact the person being referred, provide them with information on our services and a first appointment within three weeks (subject to their availability and ours).

Service User Charter

Our policy is to support and protect the fundamental human, civil and legal rights of patients and their loved ones. There is equal access to our services regardless of age, gender, sexual orientation, ethnicity, faith, social class, disability or other special needs. In recognition of personal dignity and autonomy, we will provide privacy, consideration and respect in the treatment of patients and their carers.

You are entitled to:
  • Be able to access our services within the guidelines of the referral criteria.
  • Be treated with consideration, respect and full recognition of your individuality and the need for privacy and dignity.
  • Receive an explanation by an appropriate member of the Therapy Team about any service that is being proposed, so that you can give informed consent.
  • Be told the benefits and effects you may have from any service you receive.
  • Refuse any service if you so wish.
  • Be given the opportunity to participate in the planning of your therapy sessions.
  • Be assured that, in accordance with GDPR and NHS requirements, records made regarding you and your family will be maintained in strict confidence, within the constraints of the multi-professional team care plan (please see the Fair Processing Notice on our website for more information). This includes the need to share information with others involved in your care, such as your GP and District Nurse. Your consent will be sought in the case of sensitive information.
  • Contact the Services Manager if you wish to have access to your therapy records.
  • Be assured that Practitioners who care for you are qualified through education, training and experience to deliver the services for which they are responsible.
  • Be informed of all the services provided by Sara Lee Trust.
  • Express your feelings and emotions in your own way.
  • Have your beliefs respected.

On your part, we ask that you:
  • Treat all our Team Members with courtesy and respect.
  • Give notice wherever possible if you need to cancel an appointment.
  • Do not smoke while the Practitioner is with you in your home.
  • Secure your pets while the Practitioner is in your home.
  • Tell us if you cannot understand an explanation, and ask questions for clarification.
  • Tell us if you have any suggestions that might help us improve our service.

Please share this article with your friends and followers.

The Sara Lee Trust is a much needed service for patients who have a medical condition which is severely impacting on their lives. The service is invaluable for providing patients with supportive care either through complementary therapies or counselling, when they are struggling to cope with their situation. Not only is it a great support for the patients but this also extends to family members who are often just as stressed if not more so than the patient.

Karen Angel - ESHT Macmillan Specialist Dietitian

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