Northumberland hospice issues SOS after losing £50,000 a month income during crisis

HospiceCare North Northumberland has revealed the financial challenges it is facing in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic.

Wednesday, 1st April 2020, 3:18 pm
Updated Wednesday, 15th April 2020, 12:42 pm

The charity, which has been providing specialist end-of-life care and bereavement support for the past 25 years, relies heavily on fund-raising.

Bryony Stimpson, HospiceCare finance manager, said: “Having either postponed or cancelled our fundraising events for the next few months as well as closed our shops, we are now losing income of around £50,000 every month.

“In response our small fundraising team are looking at new and innovative ways of fundraising and we will shortly be launching a coronavirus appeal to help make up that shortfall. It’s crucial that we can go on supporting local families.”

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HospiceCare North Northumberland staff.

Fliss Elsom-Cook, from Fowberry, is among those to have thanked the hospice for its work.

“Nothing was too much trouble for the hospice nurses who instinctively knew what to do and when,” she said.

“Dad felt so looked after and cared for because the hospice nurses adapted to him and his needs. When Dad’s health deteriorated he started receiving overnight care from the Hospice, this enabled Tim and I to get some sleep knowing that dad was being well looked after.

“His death was calm and peaceful and he was surrounded by his family. We can’t thank HospiceCare enough, they were amazing and we were totally blown away by the compassionate care of their nursing team.”

Fliss and Tim have expressed their gratitude for the work of HospiceCare North Northumberland.

The charity has been working hard to ensure it can continue to deliver these vital services.

Nina Burnett, HospiceCare clinical lead said: “We fully support Government measures introduced to slow down the spread of the virus and protect the most vulnerable.

“We want to reassure our communities that we are taking the necessary measures to keep our beneficiaries, staff, and volunteers safe.

“We have enforced social distancing to protect our nursing team, administration staff, volunteers and supporters.

“Our staff now, where possible, are working from home we have also suspended our wellbeing services and closed our buildings at Alnwick and Berwick to the public, until further notice.

“These protective measures have ensured that our Hospice at Home services remains unchanged being delivered by our specialist palliative care team.

Our family support service continues via telephone and our nursing team are in telephone contact with our clients to ensure they are still being supported.

“We are also ensuring that there will still be someone at the office to take calls between the hours of 9am-4.30pm Monday – Friday, so we can still be contacted in the normal way.

“Our Hospice at Home and Family support services can still be accessed via self-referral or via your healthcare professional.”

Lucy Carroll, chairman of the Board of Trustees, added: “The HospiceCare team have always felt blessed by the support given from people in our communities across North Northumberland.

“It is that very support and continued partnership that will get us through the next few months, let’s keep in touch with each other.”

HospiceCare Nursing Team can be contacted directly on 01665 606515 or 01289 309997 Email: [email protected]. Full details visit: www.hospicecare-nn.org.uk.

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