Hospice at Home
An almost full complement of members attended the Asby WI meeting at which the speaker was fellow member Jackie Lambert. Jackie has been one of six volunteer fund-raisers in Appleby for 18 years for the Hospice at Home – Carlisle & North Lakeland charity.
She explained that the Hospice at Home movement was already in existence in West Cumbria in 1995 when several local GPs took the opportunity to apply, successfully, for a government grant ,valid for two years, to prove the need for such a service in the area, and that there were nurses available to staff the venture. This resulted in the Hospice at Home – North Lakeland venture being founded in 1997, first in Penrith, then spreading to Appleby, Temple Sowerby and Shap. Surrounding areas were gradually added until, in 2001, the Carlisle area also became involved and the name changed.
Since 1997 nearly 580 patients have been helped at the end of their lives and the organisation has never knowingly failed to help someone with a life-limiting condition. Patients’ need for help is usually flagged up by a doctor, other health worker, or even by personal recommendation. As well as necessary nursing care HH-C&NL can provide respite care for relatives, alternative therapies for patients, and bereavement support for the families.
Initially the nurses were hired from elsewhere but more recently HH-C&NL has taken on the task of recruitment and in-house training for the 22 full-time equivalent nurses. This has added to the cost of running the charity and currently £20,000 is needed every month to keep the service going. The chief fund-raiser and marketing manager are responsible for mega-projects such as sponsored Coast-to-Coast events and also liaise with business partners who provide such things as accommodation or staff with various forms of expertise at no cost. Two successful shops – in Penrith and Carlisle – also raise substantial sums. The local fund-raising volunteers also add to the charity’s income of which 80% is used for nursing care.
2017 is the organisation’s 20th anniversary year and events of various kinds are already planned locally right through to January 2018: at Appleby Golf Club, Crossrigg, Cliburn, Newby, local agricultural shows, at Orton farmers’ market, in St Lawrence’s Appleby, and, to conclude the anniversary year, Burns Night in Cliburn – details of all of these can be found in the current newsletter.
Pat Bevan thanked Jackie for her informative talk. Competition winners were Pam Cowey and Louise Reeve. The raffle was won by Helen Cooper ; Maud Holder and Barbara Askew were the evening’s hostesses.