Barretts of Canterbury pantomime raises vital funds for local hospice care
Local business Barretts of Canterbury has raised an amazing £5,365 for Pilgrims Hospices with their annual pantomime production at the Marlowe Theatre.
This year’s pantomime was Peter Pan and saw a fantastic cast take to the stage, including Shaun Williamson, best known for playing Barry Evans in Eastenders, and Gemma Hunt, who presents Swashbuckle on CBeebies.
The annual pantomime is always at the top of local families’ festive to-do lists, and Managing Director, Paul Barrett, kindly ensures that his employees, their families and friends are able to attend. Additionally, all money raised from the discounted ticket sales is genorously donated to three local charities; this year, the chosen charities were Pilgrims Hospices, Kent, Surry and Sussex Air Ambulance and Porchlight.
Pilgrims would like to say a big thank you to Paul for choosing us to be a beneficiary of this incredibly generous gesture; the money raised will make such a positive difference to the lives of people across east Kent who are living with incurable illness.
Lydia Todd, Community Fundraising Officer at Pilgrims Hospices
Each charity is also invited to hold a collection on the night. Pilgrims volunteers made the most of this opportunity by going along and getting into the festive spirit, and those who collected were offered tickets to the show. They thoroughly enjoyed the night and were particularly touched by the generosity of the audience who donated to Pilgrims.
Barretts raised £16,095 through this year’s pantomime, and Paul Barrett hosted all three charities at the Jaguar showroom in Canterbury to present them with cheques for £5,365 each.
During the past five years Barretts’ annual pantomime has raised a stunning £24,215 for Pilgrims, which is enough to pay for 1,000 hours of specialist nursing care in east Kent.
Lydia Todd, Community Fundraising Officer at Pilgrims Hospices, said: “Pilgrims would like to say a big thank you to Paul for choosing us to be a beneficiary of this incredibly generous gesture; the money raised will make such a positive difference to the lives of people across east Kent who are living with incurable illness. Barretts is a long-standing supporter of Pilgrims and we can’t thank their staff enough for always ensuring the Marlowe pantomime is such a great success.”
Ella Williams from Canterbury and her gorgeous two-year-old black Labrador, Pal, will join Pilgrims Hospices Paws 4 Pilgrims fun 5K dog walk on Sunday 25 March. Ella and her puppy friend are taking part in loving memory of three very special people who all spent time in the care of nurses at Pilgrims Hospice Canterbury. The pair have already raised more than £250 to help others who need Pilgrims care in the local area.
Hundreds of supporters and their canine buddies have already signed up to raise important funds for Pilgrims by walking the beautiful coastal route in Deal, followed by a fun dog show.
The hospice exceeded our family expectations; we could not have asked for anything more. We received such high quality care before, during and after all three experiences and will always be grateful.
Ella is remembering:
John Michael Choules
After being diagnosed with COPD, Grandpa Mike sadly passed away on 20 March 2017 and spent his last few hours at Pilgrims Hospice Canterbury. The staff at the hospice spent time with my nan and helped a lot with aftercare, which was much appreciated.
Kenneth George Williams
After a long battle with kidney cancer, Grandpa Ken passed away on 18 August 2017 and spent his final week in the care of the lovely nurses at Pilgrims Hospice Canterbury. A special mention to the nurse who my nan fondly remembers as ‘Mrs Chatter Box’ who helped all of us, but especially my nan, through this time.
Susan Clare Garcia-Rodriguez
Sue sadly passed away due to breast cancer on 9 September 2012 and spent time in Pilgrims Hospice Canterbury, where the nurses provided amazing care and support. Our much loved and very close family friend is still dearly missed and fondly remembered six years on.
Ella said: “I really didn’t know much about hospice care until our close family friend, Sue, spent time there; I then found out more when my grandads also received Pilgrims care.
“The hospice exceeded our family expectations, we could not have asked for anything more. We received such high quality care before, during and after all three experiences and will always be grateful.”
Ella is hoping to raise at least £360 for Pilgrims. She explained: “Pal is just full of energy and will love sharing a Sunday walk with lots of other dogs and their families. We will be walking with my partner Andrew, my brother Josh and my sisters Tas and Tasha – and hopefully my mum Steph, too.
“Pal especially loves a tennis ball and I’m sure she’s going to enjoy taking part in the fun dog events after the sponsored walk.”
Kate Duddell, Pilgrims Fundraising Manager said: “We hope even more people will join us for our special Sunday stroll; you can even join in the walk without a dog. Why not come along and have your face painted as a doggy character and sponsor yourself for a few pounds?
“The dog show starts at 12pm, and a variety of stalls and catering will be available. It will be great fun to watch the dogs doing their best to impress the judges in the Best Sausage Catcher competition, amongst others.”
Pilgrims is a charity providing palliative care free of charge to people in east Kent. For people with a range of life-limiting illnesses, specialist services are provided from our three sites in Canterbury, Ashford and Thanet, in patients’ homes and in the community. We offer a range of services, from end of life care given on our wards to our new Wellbeing and Social Programmesupporting people after they are diagnosed to live well and stay independent. Only 25% of the funding we receive comes from the government.
Kent University step up to the challenge for Pilgrims
Last year Pilgrims Hospices challenged people to face the flames at their inspirational Fire Walk. Hundreds of supporters took part raising an incredible £61,000; enough to cover more than 3,000 of nursing care. This year, the ‘hottest, shortest sponsored walk in the world’ is back with an extra twist!
Not only can you conquer your fears by walking barefoot over 800 degrees of red-hot wood embers, they’re offering the chance to test your nerves by facing the new Icewalk. By putting mind over matter, you could achieve what would be seen to be impossible by walking barefoot across a bed of sterile broken glass.
Pilgrims Hospices event organiser, Robert Grew, met with the University of Kent Sport team who will be hosting theFire and Ice Walkat the University Sports Pavilion on 2 March. Robert said: “It’s great to be working with Kent Sport again this year, the venue is just brilliant and with the addition of the Ice Walk it will really be a chance to test your inner strength. It’s going to add even more drama to this exciting evening event.
“It’s such a confidence boost for the people who take part. Our brave firewalkers tell us how they are still buzzing from the experience weeks later. It’s something anyone can do with no previous training. More of a psychological challenge that physical, by facing the flames you’ll be raising vital funds for our hospices. With every single step, you’ll be making a difference to the lives of local people and their families who are in need of end-of-life care.”
Everyone knows how important Pilgrims Hospices is to our community, we are delighted to be involved with the Free and Ice event.
Phil Darrell-Smith, Marketing Manager for University of Kent Sport said: “Everyone knows how important Pilgrims Hospices is to our community, we are delighted to be involved with the Fire and Ice event.
“We’ve already had lots of interest from the students and hope to be able to raise as much money as possible for local hospice care. There’s plenty of room for spectators, so why not get involved and bring your friends and family. With a breath-taking display from fire performer Paul Incredible just before the main event, they’ll be amazed as they cheer you across the coals and see what can be achieved.”
Take on a Firewalk an Icewalk, OR BOTH, no previous training is required. With interactive training seminars with renowned motivational speaker and fire and glass walking expert Cliff Mann before the daring dash, we know you’ll feel fantastic once you’ve completed the challenge. After all, if you can achieve this, you can find the confidence to do anything.
Pictured above, Kent University Sports team Ollie Killner, Karen Drake, Nick Smith, Mariah Young, Phil Darrell-Smith, Aric Vadevallo, Linda Vernon with Pilgrims Hospices Event Organiser, Robert Grew.
Each year Pilgrims supports hundreds of local people coping with a life limiting illness and their families. The charity offers a range of services: from end of life care given on its wards, to its Wellbeing and Social Programmesupporting people after they are diagnosed to live well and stay independent.
The gift of a cuddle can make all the difference
Pilgrims Hospices is asking people to share the love by giving a cuddle this Spring and making a small donation to their new Give a Cuddle appeal that launched in February.
Pilgrims is raising funds to provide each of its three hospices with a Cuddle Bed; these extra wide and adaptable hospital beds will enable patients to lie next to their loved one at the hospice, whether that’s husbands, wives, partners, children, grandchildren, grandparents or friends.
Kate White, Senior Nurse Manager, said: “Everyone loves a cuddle and cuddling is even more important to those families whose loved ones are ill. It’s been linked to reduced anxiety and the release of feel-good hormones, supporting pain relief and promoting better sleep.
Everyone loves a cuddle and cuddling is even more important to those families whose loved ones are ill.
Kate White, Senior Nurse Manager at Pilgrims Hospices
“Only this January, Tony, the husband of one our patients, Gill, had such kind words to say about the care his wife had received. He explained that his one wish was that he could have been able to share a cuddle with his beloved wife during her final days.”
Tony said: “Each evening as we fell asleep at the hospice, I held Gill’s hand between her bed and the chair I slept in, but it wasn’t the same as having a cuddle at home. To have those extra nights together cuddling would have been such a comfort to both of us.
“I’m so pleased to be able to support the Give a Cuddle campaign. Gill would simply love the thought of others benefitting from such special time with their loved ones, and I have truly realised the importance of having just one more cuddle.”
Each of the beds costs £10,500, and Pilgrims hope to secure local support for a Cuddle Bed on each of the hospice sites in Ashford, Canterbury and Thanet.
We put the people using our services at the centre of all we do.
Sara Scriven, Individual Giving Manager at Pilgrims Hospices
Sara Scriven, former Individual Giving Manager, said: “We put the people using our services at the centre of all we do. We wrap our arms around the whole family as well as the person who is ill. Tony’s story has shown us how important it is for us to offer people using our wards a bed that’s big enough for two people to lay side by side; to make our dream a reality we need to raise £31,500 in total.”
Each year Pilgrims supports hundreds of local people coping with a life limiting illness, and their families. We offer a range of services: from end of life care given on our wards, to our Wellbeing and Social Programme supporting people after they are diagnosed to live well and stay independent.
21st February 2018
Small changes make a big difference to compassionate care
It’s great to see news of Pilgrims Compassion Project with East Kent Hospitals has people talking this week.
At the heart, this partnership is to promote dignity, respect and compassion at the end of life – something that’s central to Pilgrims mission.
The idea grew from a concept championed at Hospice UK’s national conference by hospices around the UK, including Saint Francis.
We began developing our own programme for east Kent in 2016. We started by creating our small ‘Compassion Symbol’, based on the Pilgrims Hospices logo.
A discreet way to encourage conversations
The idea is that the symbol can be displayed discreetly on hospital wards when a person is expected to die within the next few hours, days – or when a person has just died. It’s used as a gentle way to encourage an atmosphere of quiet and respect at this significant time for families.
All hospital staff, clinical and non-clinical, who come into contact with patients and families at this incredibly difficult time are given training by Pilgrims nurses and the hospital’s own end of life care experts in the use of the Compassion symbol. Staff are encouraged to see this as part of the normal ward routine and culture when caring for patients and their families.
Why is this necessary? All hospitals have a raft of end of life training in place for their staff but this is a unique chance for them to partner up with our hospice nurses. Pilgrims nurses deliver end of life care 24/7 and can be a great source of knowledge and support in caring for patients and families. The project also extends training to non-clinical teams so they are aware of the impact that simple small acts of kindness can have on creating the very best experience possible for families at the bedside when someone is dying.
Talking about death and dying is, naturally, still something we find hard to do even in today’s society. For some, even the idea of a discreet symbol to say someone is at the end of their life is not something they feel comfortable thinking about; this is exactly why we feel projects like this are needed – to help make some of those conversations easier.
One of the hardest things for families who are coping with the impact of caring for a dying relative can be talking about what’s happening; knowing what to say and do. Used at the right time and by trained staff, the Compassion symbol can be used as a soft and discreet ice breaker to start off some of those conversations at a time that’s right for individuals so they know there is support available if they want it. The symbol is only ever used if the patient and their family has given their consent, and the feedback we have been getting from families is that it has made a real difference to their experience
A subtle reminder for hospital staff
As important, perhaps, is the fact that the Compassion symbol acts as a subtle reminder to staff in hospitals who may be going about their working day – clinical and non-clinical – to be sensitive when encountering people who may be grieving or distressed.
Influencing the end of life experience of more people
Each year Pilgrims Hospices gives hands on care and support to more than 2,400 people with an incurable illness, and their families and friends. We support people wherever they need us – on our wards, in our Therapy Centres, in patients’ homes and in community settings like hospitals and care homes.
While we have a duty to offer hands-on hospice care, Pilgrims Hospices is also committed to having a positive impact on the experience of end of life care for as many people in east Kent as possible. To achieve this it’s vital that we work in very closely with other health and social care providers – including hospitals. This project came from that desire.
Since being piloted on 9 east Kent hospital wards back in May 2017 we have seen the Compassion Project’s momentum grow. From small beginnings during the piloting phase, to reaching more than 880 staff on 50 clinical and non-clinical wards across east Kent.
I hope that, with some of the conversations this week about the Compassion Project, its reach will continue to grow so that together with hospital staff we can continue to be there for the next family that needs us.
Super-supporters raise vital funds for hospice care
A group of hospice nurses accepted a cheque for a staggering £53,000 for their charity this week, thanks to the support of thousands of people from across east Kent.
The funds were raised through the latest Pilgrims Hospices Lottery Superdraw, which saw supporters buying tickets for £1 each with a chance to win up to £2,000.
Accepting the cheque on behalf of the hospice, Senior Ward Sister, Sarah Martins, said: “The whole care team at Pilgrims – nurses, doctors and therapists – is humbled to see just how many people have supported the draw this year. Their generosity will mean we can be there for more people with incurable illness who need our care, and their families.”
The whole care team at Pilgrims – nurses, doctors and therapists – is humbled to see just how many people have supported the draw this year.
Sarah Martins, Senior Ward Sister at Pilgrims Hospices
Each year Pilgrims supports hundreds of local people, and their families, who are coping with life limiting illness. The charity offer a range of services: from end of life care given on its wards, to its Wellbeing and Social Programme supporting people after they are diagnosed to live well and stay independent.
The money raised by the Care this Christmas Superdraw is enough to cover the cost of 2,650 hours of Pilgrims nursing care where and when it’s needed.
Shiralee Riddell, Pilgrims Hospices Lottery Manager, presented the cheque, saying: “It’s such a pleasure to present this fabulous sum to the hospices. We would like to thank our supporters who raised such a phenomenal amount by purchasing £1 tickets and making our Superdraw such a huge success.”
There are many ways to support Pilgrims throughout the year; joining Pilgrims Hospices Lottery for just £1 each week is just one of them. By becoming a Lottery member, you can help Shiralee and her team to support Pilgrims in providing vital, compassionate care to local people when they need it the most. Click here for more information or call 01227 379 741.