Finding comfort in OrangeLine

Roy Setchell, 74, has been reaping the rewards of OrangeLine: Saint Francis Hospice's service for local people who are feeling alone, isolated, or in need of a friendly conversation.


Yet Roy remembers how he was led to believe that getting upset and talking about feelings wasn't a macho trait — but more of a feminine one.


"I'm of a generation where men kept things close to their chest," Roy said. "If we had problems, we were told to suck them up and get on with it."


In 2019, Roy's wife, Hilary, was diagnosed with metastatic colon cancer. From the outset, her prognosis was heartbreakingly bleak. She wanted to pass away at Saint Francis Hospice. Sadly, Hil never made it there.


"It all happened so quickly," remembered a tearful Roy. "I loved her so much. I was sinking lower and lower and couldn't stop crying."


Roy resisted the notion that was drilled into him as a younger man and called us.


"I desperately needed help and someone to talk to," Roy admitted.


He's encouraging other men to do the same:


"Don't do this 'male thing' and keep your emotions inside," he said. "As Hil always used to say: a problem shared is a problem halved."


Roy is one of 465 people our OrangeLine service has supported over the past year.


As part of Hospice Care Week and its theme of This Is What It Takes, we'll be explaining what it takes to keep our Hospice running, which £25,910 a day in voluntary income.


You can help reach that target and ensure that we'll always be there for people like Roy by supporting our Urgent Appeal — for as little as £3 a month.