Strathcarron Hospice thanks public after reaching £200,000 fundraising target

Falkirk district residents of all ages have helped to raise more than £200,000 for Strathcarron Hospice since the UK entered lockdown.

By Jonathon Reilly
Tuesday, 19th May 2020, 12:30 pm

The free palliative care resource has thanked the many youngsters, teens, parents and grandparents who have devised their own fundraising ideas to support the hospice’s #StandWithStrathcarron appeal amid the coronavirus pandemic.

To date, members of the public have generated £208,308 to help employees of the Fankerton-based service to continue caring for the sick and terminally ill.

The difficulties currently facing Strathcarron could barely be starker, as the hospice is now losing around £200,000 a month as it is unable to hold fundraisers and all of its shops remain closed.

Strathcarron Hospice desperately needs voluntary donations to continue providing its care services. Picture: Michael Gillen.

The “sad reality of the current situation” was how Strathcarron’s fundraising manager, Jackie Johnston, assessed matters.

However, she and her fellow colleagues remain immensely grateful for the backing they’ve received – support which is crucial in enabling the service to carry on its work.

Jackie said: “The campaign has been backed wholeheartedly by our local people, but in real terms this amount of money will cover 15 days of our services for people living, or dying, with a terminal illness.

“Clearly Covid-19 is in everyone’s mind right now but there is still a huge population who have a terminal illness that we need to care for.

Jackie Johnston, Strathcarron Hospice fundraising manager. Picture: Alan Murray.

“We continue to care for patients on a needs basis, regardless if they have, or have not, been tested for Covid-19.

“As news was coming through the media about the coronavirus pandemic the fundraising team at Strathcarron Hospice put together the #StandWithStrathcarron appeal, never really believing at that time it would need to go live.

“Little did we know at that time what a saviour it would be and how many members of the public would react so quickly.”

When the lockdown came into effect, Strathcarron’s 17 shops shut overnight yet its £12,900 daily running costs, for which it relies on voluntary donations, stayed the same.

Although the hospice day care service was immediately closed, its nurses were redeployed to other areas under pressure, such as its in-patient unit and [email protected]e.

Elsewhere, Strathcarron has also offered Covid-19-related support for care home workers and continues to support the NHS.

Critically, though, it is not part of the NHS and so does not benefit from the ongoing UK-wide fundraising efforts on behalf of our health service.

Jackie continued: “We still need £12,900 every day to cover our costs, just as we always do.

“Our priority is to continue the very specialist palliative care we provide, as we’ve been doing for the past 39 years.

“The public response to our appeal has been, at times, quite overwhelming.

“We have been delighted with the response and the way in which people have been so creative with their fundraising ideas.

“Every single supporter, young or old, has made a fantastic contribution to #StandWithStrathcarron at this difficult time and we are more grateful than ever for this support, enabling us to continue providing specialist care, love and support for patients.”

Strathcarron urgently needs help as it seeks to raise another £200,000 to be able to continue caring for those in Forth Valley and North Lanarkshire.

To make a donation, visit the hospice website.