Cash boost for hospice

IPSWICH's children's hospice looks set to benefit from a funding boost after it was announced that the government are to plough £27 million in to supporting services across the country.

IPSWICH's children's hospice looks set to benefit from a funding boost after it was announced that the government are to plough £27 million in to supporting services across the country.

It is unclear how much of this will be coming to Suffolk but Graham Butland, chief executive of East Anglian Children's Hospices (EACH), said he is delighted.

The hospices are reliant on fundraising to keep them going and earlier this year they were forced to cut staff because a substantial lottery grant came to an end.

The £27m will be spread out over three years, with hospices throughout England receiving the first £9m in this financial year.

Mr Butland said: “This is very good news.

“EACH have been campaigning for the government to give more support to children's hospices for the best part of a year now.”

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“We don't know quite what the process is yet or how the money will be allocated, and we're not sure whether it will be to fund existing services or new ones.

“However, EACH is one of the largest children's hospice charities so I would be very surprised if we don't receive some of this funding.”

EACH have three children's hospices in the region - one in Walker Close in Ipswich, one in Quiddenham in Norfolk and one in Milton, near Cambridge.

Mr Butland said the money is much-needed, following a difficult period for the hospices.

He said: “We've had to cut 22 jobs across the three hospices as we were no longer receiving £650,000 from the Big Lottery Fund.

“We had to take the action to ensure that we remain financially stable.

“Fundraising is on the up now but we still need to raise £12,000 a day, every day, in order to keep the hospices open.”

Has your child used the hospice's services? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or send us an e-mail to eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk

WEBLINK: www.each.org.uk

In the period between 2000 and 2004 almost 15,000 children and young people under 19 died in England - 25pc of those young people would have needed palliative care.

Of the children and young people, aged between 0-19, who died between 2000 and 2004, 62pc of them died in NHS hospitals, 31pc died at home, and 5pc died in hospices.

Around half the conditions causing death in young people and children, where palliative care would have been needed, were cancer-related. Other life-threatening conditions include muscular dystrophy, cystic fibrosis and severe cerebral palsy.

Source: Department of Health.

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