Reaching the community

Fsella Afzal-Pagliari

Working with different cultures and religions

Sue Ryder’s new ‘Hard to Reach’ project in Bedfordshire aims to raise awareness and build understanding of different care services amongst Black, and Minority Ethnic (BME) communities.

Fsella Afzal-Pagliari joined Sue Ryder in April 2015. As well as helping to make Sue Ryder’s local hospice, St John’s, a more inviting place for different cultures and religions, her work is ensuring people don’t feel like they have to struggle alone if they or somebody they love is facing the end of their life.

Increasing understanding

Fsella is working to increase understanding of different cultures and religions at St John’s Hospice in Moggerhanger, so that the hospice is a more welcoming place and to encourage more people to consider using the services available. The chapel, for example, has prayer facilities and artefacts from different faiths. The hospice also has a fully qualified chef, who is able to cater for a variety of religious and cultural dietary requirements.

“Raising awareness among hospice staff of the different care needs required by some cultures is paramount,” Fsella said. “Food is very important; if you can’t provide the correct food - someone may not consider using the hospice facilities.”

Fsella hopes to see more patients from BME communities accessing Sue Ryder’s services.

She said: “A lot of ethnic minority families prefer to look after their loved ones at home, which is absolutely their choice. My role is all about telling them how to access services and letting them know there’s support available in the community. Our Morrisons-funded Hospice at Home service across the region, is critical and a lifeline to these families.”

“I love my job”

“I love my job. It’s very worthwhile, especially when you hear stories about how Sue Ryder has helped someone through a difficult time.”

Sue Ryder’s ‘Hard to Reach’ project is a completely new service funded by the Morrisons Raise a Smile partnership with Sue Ryder, with Morrisons customers and colleagues raising over £5 million for the health and social care charity since the partnership launched in February 2014.

Sue Ryder’s partnership with Morrisons is funding new community healthcare services, family support teams and our Online Community and Support. To donate £3 to the Morrisons Raise a Smile partnership with Sue Ryder, text ‘SMILE’ to 70123. Terms and conditions can be found at