Students from Broadstairs College treated hospice patients, Therapy Centre users, staff and guests to a scrumptious afternoon high tea last week.
The students aged 16 – 18 years who are studying level 2 and 3 Catering and Hospitality arrived in chefs whites for cooking and black and whites for the front of house team.
Roger Phillips, Head of Catering for East Kent College, said: “The students take part in events within the community as part of their curriculum. Many of the group have only recently started their course in September and are progressing really well.
“The college is keen to expose trainees to a diverse range of opportunities to broaden their skills and offer them opportunities to enhance their progress into employment. Training at Pilgrims’ hospice in Margate, is just one of the many ways we are helping our young people to engage with their community.”
Training at Pilgrims’ hospice in Margate, is just one of the many ways we are helping our young people to engage with the community.
Roger Phillips, East Kent College
The students prepared and cooked cakes, pastries, and sandwiches; all beautifully presented and served.
Georgina Braithwaite, Head Chef for Pilgrims Hospice Thanet, said: “It’s lovely to have the support from our local community and not just with financial donations. The students had the opportunity to find out more about what happens here and discover we are much more than a hospice ward.
“I would like to thank Roger, his colleague Rob Allsworth and the students for offering us such a lovely treat.”
Ian Ashton, Head of Catering for Pilgrims Hospices, is working with Broadstairs College to identify opportunities to offer some work experience placements for students next year.
If you or someone you know is coping with a life-limiting illness and you think you may benefit from Pilgrims’ support, talk to your GP or Healthcare Professional about the options or visit How we Help for more information.
Pilgrims Hospices’ retail team held their first ever Christmas Fair at Westgate Hall in Canterbury on Saturday 24 November. The event was a great success; 300 people attended, raising £3,200 for the local hospice charity that provides compassionate end-of-life care across east Kent.
With 14 stalls selling a wide range of goods, plus craft activities for children and Father Christmas himself, there was something for everyone to enjoy. Shoppers could bag winter bargains including Brand New With Tags items, vintage goods, toys, Christmas cards, festive decorations and homemade baked treats.
Charlotte Brown, Retail Manager for Pilgrims Hospices shops in the Canterbury area, organised the event. She said:
“It was a brilliant day; the atmosphere was fantastic and it was a pleasure to organise this event for a charity that is close to my heart. A big thank you to all the Pilgrims volunteers and staff who helped bring it together. Our Christmas Fair was finished off perfectly by local choir the Whitstable Warblers, who got everyone in the festive spirit.”
Tim Stewart, Retail Business Development Manager for Pilgrims Hospices, added:
“The whole Retail team did a fantastic job of making the Christmas Fair a great success. The money raised will go such a long way, helping Pilgrims Hospices to continue its vital work and be there for the next family that needs us.”
If you’d like to support Pilgrims Hospices charity shops, visit pilgrimshospices.org/shops to find out more about how you can donate or become a volunteer.
Take a break – Ashford’s new Patient and Family Lounge opens
With generous funding from the Frank Brake Charitable Trust, Pilgrims Hospice Ashford has been able to completely transform a space into a beautiful modern and relaxing lounge. Along with the large main lounge, there is a smaller family lounge/over-night room, a new wet room and bathroom. All areas are now open for patients and their families to enjoy.
Mr. Brake and the Trustees of the Frank Brake Charitable Trust wanted to support the hospice with a project that would really help to make a difference to the people of east Kent. They acknowledge that many of our patients (46%) are with us for symptom management and will return home and whilst they stay with us, it is important that they have an area that offers them the comfort of home.
We know how important it is to have a space where people can take five minutes to relax.
Heather Sawney, Pilgrims Hospices
Heather Sawney, Pilgrims Special Project Manager, designed the space, basing it on Ashford’s surrounding countryside. The main lounge features the soft colours of apple and cherry blossom in soft blue skies. She said: “I am so thankful to the Frank Brake Charitable Trust. With their generosity, we’ve been able to create a lovely welcoming room at the Ashford hospice.”
“We know how important it is to have a space where people can take five minutes to relax, make themselves a cup of tea. It’s important for people to enjoy precious time together in a non-clinical environment.”
This week Mr. Brake and Steph Senior, Chair of the Frank Brake Trust, were invited by Cate Russell, Pilgrims CEO, to officially open the new lounge. Cate said: “I’m delighted with the new lounge area, I feel sure that families will enjoy taking the opportunity to relax and spend time here. It’s bright and welcoming with a play area for young people, books, a TV area, and a balcony to take in some fresh air.
Every day matters for our patients and families when time is short.
Cate Russell, Chief Executive Pilgrims Hospices
“Pilgrims wish to thank Frank, Steph and their fellow Trustees for funding the project and all their continuing support. The Frank Brake Charitable Trust has consistently supported the Ashford hospice from when it was first built.
“Every day matters for our patients and families when time is short, so to be able to have this facility up and running so quickly is just wonderful and a great addition to our services.”
Cate expressed her sincere thanks to everyone involved in the creation of the lounges, for their amazing hard work, in pulling this wonderful project together.
Care is provided from three hospice sites in Ashford, Canterbury and Thanet as well as in patients’ own homes. To offer these services to patients and their families the charity must raise £11 million each year from the generous local community.
19th November 2018
Trees of Love: Vanessa’s story
Vanessa Oakley attends Trees of Love every year in memory of her parents, Betty and Deryck. Here, she explains why it’s so important to come together with others at Pilgrims Hospices’ annual festive remembrance.
Mum and Dad were married for over 54 years and were the most wonderful, kind and loving parents. They were so generous, loved hosting parties and wouldn’t let anyone bring anything. There would always be so much food! Mum would say, “No one’s leaving my house hungry” and they wouldn’t! I have such fond memories.
The important part of the service for me is when the lights on the tree are lit; l believe our loved ones join us at this point.
Mum was referred to Pilgrims in 2004. I remember the most incredible hospice nurse coming to visit us. She supported us at home until eventually Mum was admitted into the hospice. I couldn’t believe how different it was to a hospital – it was so much like home! There was such a relaxed atmosphere; I enjoyed going to visit Mum every day. Everyone knew who we were and remembered us, we were even allowed to bring in our dogs. Every day the cook would come around and ask us, “What would you like today?” and he’d always say, “Is your dog here?” and if he was he’d bring him something too. It was such a caring place; we felt so looked after. Mum died peacefully at the hospice with her dogs Topsey and Tommy snuggled up on the bed with her.
It was only a few years later that Dad passed away, and each year since we have come back to the hospice to remember them at Trees of Love. We write a dove to Mum, Dad and the dogs, Topsey and Tommy.
For me, the most important thing about Trees of Love is that it brings people together for the same reason: to remember our loved ones. I feel that we’re all supporting each other just by being there side by side, whether you know the person next to you or not. The important part of the service for me is when the lights on the tree are lit; l believe our loved ones join us at this point, and even after 13 years it still brings a tear to my eyes.
Trees of Love outdoor services will take place at our hospices in Ashford, Canterbury and Thanet at 5pm on Saturday 8 December 2018.
We also offer indoor services with seating across our east Kent community:
St Nicholas Church, New Romney, 5pm on Saturday 1 December
All Souls Church, Cheriton, Folkestone, 5pm on Sunday 2 December
Assembly Rooms, New Romney, 3pm on Saturday 8 December
St Peter and St Paul Church, River, Dover, 4pm on Sunday 9 December
Barham Crematorium, Barham, 4.30pm on Friday 14 December
Charing Crematorium, Charing, 4.30pm on Friday 14 December
Pilgrims Hospices Christmas Fair hailed as a success
Pilgrims Hospices Christmas Fair was a fabulous success on Saturday 10 November with almost £18,000 raised towards the work of the hospice.
This year saw the introduction of a food market, with delights to tempt including vegan Christmas roasts, mulled cider, delicious fudge, delightful cheeses, jams and chutneys, and mince pie flavoured ice cream.
There were a variety of new crafts for sale from the external traders including stunning pottery, beautiful glass, cute baby goods, jewellery made from Nespresso pods, eco food wraps and much more.
There were many beautifully created crafts that hospice volunteers made and donated for the fair. Whether it was the table decorations which were made from old Christmas trees, unwanted baubles and ribbons or the lovely hand knitted goods, there was something for everyone.
Rush and Isla Dann
Carole Mann, Cara Herligy and Cristina Sandy
Invicta Ukulele Club
Eve Russell (8) from Ashford
Open the Box, a new game introduced at the fair this year, was full of special surprises for everyone and proved to be very popular, as did the chocolate tombola that was close to being addictive!
Father Christmas made a special visit too, much to the delight of children who had eagerly awaited his visit. There were some other special guests too; Elsa from Frozen, a unicorn and members of the Ashford Panto entertained visitors throughout the day.
Cynthia Cleverdon, one of the external stall holders, said: “The atmosphere at the fair is always very friendly and supportive. I love to support Pilgrims Hospices because we all know at least one person who has benefitted from the care and kindness the hospices provide at a difficult stage of life.”
The atmosphere at the fair is always very friendly and supportive.
Cynthia Cleverdon, stall holder
This year, the Pilgrims Hospices Education team was delighted to be present at the fair to promote the Time to Talkprogramme they run. These include film nights, poetry readings and Death Cafes, which give the opportunity to talk about the issues surrounding death and dying.
Victoria Friar, Pilgrims Hospices Community Fundraising Manager, said: “I would like to say a massive thank you to the Ashford Fundraising team and all the volunteers who worked tirelessly behind the scenes in the months before the fair. Over 100 volunteers turned up on the day to make the fair the great success that it was.
“I would also like to say a thank you to Penfold Panels for sponsoring the event and helping us to make it such a success.
“Pilgrims Hospices needs to raise £11 million per year to offer care free of charge to the people of east Kent. We couldn’t do this without the support of the local community, so a huge thank you goes to everyone who came and contributed to this fantastic total.”
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 Programme supporting people after they are diagnosed to live well and stay independent.
15th November 2018
Wahl team join 100s of Santas to support Pilgrims
Santas on the Run is taking place in Herne Bay for the second time on Sunday 2 December. The event is becoming a firm festive favourite for families to fundraise for Pilgrims in the Christmas period, with over 700 supporters already registered for the festive 3k or 5k fun run.
A team of staff, family and friends from Wahl (UK) Limited are taking part in this year’s event. The local business who are well known for their hair care products globally are also the generous headline sponsors of Pilgrims Hospices festive fundraiser.
Wahl team member Martin Lindridge from the graphics department told us: “We have around 35 Santas registered so far to help raise funds for Pilgrims, and there may even be more joining our team on the day.
Wahl UK team
Martin Lindridge, Wahl UK
“I really wanted to get involved, having had some personal experience of the charity’s special care when my sister, Debbie Purcell, was cared for at the Canterbury hospice in May of this year.
“Debbie who lived in Whitstable had myeloma cancer, she was only 52 and had several admissions as a patient on the hospice ward in order to help manage her pain and symptoms.
I’m very pleased to help support such an important charity within our community.
Martin Lindridge, Wahl UK
“She always spoke highly of the charity who cared for all of us in such difficult times. Nothing was too much trouble and the staff did so much to make her comfortable. It was not just the level of care and support; everyone was so willing to go that extra mile to make every day count. Pilgrims was peaceful and tranquil and Debbie’s room looked out onto the beautiful gardens, which we all found relaxing.
“I’m very pleased to help support such an important charity within our community.”
David Goodman, Managing Director of Wahl UK, said: “Wahl is very proud to support this event. Our staff themselves chose Pilgrims Hospices as their Charity of the Year for 2018, so the Santas on the Run! event will provide a fantastic, fun way to end the year with lots of us getting involved.”
The staff have been selecting and supporting a Charity of the Year since 2015. Prior to this, they still fundraised but stuck to the annual charity days run by all the big national charities. They wanted to bring it closer to home and now aim to support local, independent charities that are close to their hearts.
“Staff nominate charities then we take a vote, and Pilgrims Hospices won by a very clear majority”, added David.
Throughout the year staff held a quiz night, parties, bake sales and dressing up competitions, and will have a Christmas jumper day. Wahl will be generously match funding all of the staff fundraising; this will allow double the amount to be donated to hospice care within the east Kent community.
Last year Santas on the Run! raised an incredible £27,000.
Lydia, Community Fundraising Officer at Pilgrims Hospices
Lydia Todd, Pilgrims Community Fundraising Officer, said: “We are delighted to have the wonderful support from Wahl UK, their sponsorship of Santas on the Run! means that more money raised by supporters and participants will go into patient care.
“Last year Santas on the Run! raised an incredible £27,000, which could pay for as many as 1,350 hours of nursing care. Wahl will be helping Pilgrims to try and achieve that again this year.
“I visited the Wahl team recently to deliver their Santa suits, they were brilliant sports and all popped them on for a mini photo shoot. Thank you all so much.”
Wahl is an international leader in the manufacturing of products for the professional barber and hairdressing trade, consumer personal care and styling, massagers and animal grooming. Since Leo J. Wahl filed his patent for the first electric hair clipper in 1919, Wahl has remained at the forefront of the industry, with over 90% of barbers now using Wahl.
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 Programme supporting people after they are diagnosed, to live well and stay independent.