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Gloucestershire Business News

Join the Heart of Longfield Fund to help your local hospice

Longfield Hospice in Minchinhampton has been there every day for people in Gloucestershire during lockdown, offering support to patients, carers and their loved ones when they need it most.

Now it is asking for your help so it can continue its work for years to come. It has set up the Heart of Longfield Fund, encouraging people to give what they can each month, so the hospice can plan ahead with greater confidence for the provision of its free services.

Every area of the hospice's work, from day therapy to counselling and Hospice at Home, has been affected in some way by covid-19 and it has had to find new ways of offering support to people.

Carers have been working round the clock in extra PPE to look after people in their own homes and the day therapy team has continued to offer help and advice for patients remotely, to ensure they are not alone during the lockdown.

Tracey Halliday, Hospice at Home healthcare assistant, said: "When we show up at a patient's home with all our PPE on, it can be hard as they can't see our faces. I think a face speaks first to someone, so I just hope they can see kind eyes instead.

"With the current situation, we do stay longer and talk more, to give them the reassurance that we are there for them, even if we can't give them the big hug that we want to give them."

Everyone at the hospice has worked hard to adapt at a time when its 20 charity shops were closed and fundraising events cancelled. While many of the stores have now reopened, the hospice is still in need of additional income.

Simon Bernstein, chief executive, said: "Although the lockdown has eased and we have begun to reopen some of our shops, we could be forced to close them again, should the coronavirus return. We may also have to suspend fundraising events that we've postponed once already.

"By setting up a regular monthly gift now, it will give us the security of knowing that we can rely on that income to run our services even if there is a second wave."

Samantha Monks set up a regular donation after her dad Peter Jones was cared for by the Hospice at Home team. He was diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer in July 2019 and by October that year, he needed palliative care. The Hospice at Home team visited him every day, so he could remain at the family home in Gloucester. He died on January 27th this year aged 75.

She said: "The Longfield team visited him at home two to three times a day and he loved the banter they would have with him and I'm sure this helped him achieve his goal of having one last Christmas.

"I have seen how kind and compassionate they were with both my parents during this time, nothing was ever too much. He wouldn't have been able to be at home with his family without Longfield and that's why I have set up a regular monthly gift to allow them to help other people just like my dad."

A monthly donation of:

  • £10 could provide protective gloves for a Hospice at Home carer for one week
  • £20 could pay for a nurse or carer's uniform
  • £60 could pay for a daytime visit by two carers to someone with a life-limiting illness.
  • £100 could pay for three telephone counselling sessions with a trained professional.

To set up a monthly gift or a one-off donation, please visit https://www.longfield.org.uk/heart-of-longfield-fund 

Picture credits: Thousand Word Media, except Samantha Monks (submitted)

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