Ipswich hospice raises £250k in fightback against Covid-19 crisis
Ipswich’s St Elizabeth Hospice has raised an “amazing” £250,000 in six months as part of a spirited fightback against the crisis of the coronavirus pandemic.
Charities across Suffolk have faced challenging times this year, as the virus has forced them to close shops and cancel fundraising events - wiping out large streams of income.
Government provides £350million a year to hospices across the UK, but this is a small portion of the funds needed to provide services for people living with progressive or life-limiting illnesses.
Hannah Bloom, director of income generation at St Elizabeth Hospice, said: “Following the pandemic outbreak, and subsequent lockdown, we knew income would be impacted and we needed to act quickly.”
So, with 75% of its income coming from fundraising, shops and donations, it contacted Ipswich-based Genesis PR.
Within 48 hours, the hospice had a plan for its #HereTogether campaign to try and plug the potential gap.
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While not an emergency appeal, Ms Bloom said: “#HereTogether was a campaign to ask people to be here for us today so we could be there for them in the future and that is exactly what the public did.
The campaign made an immediate impact, raising more than £88,000 within its first month and reaching over 50,000 people.
“From East Anglia to across the country and further afield, the response has been amazing,” said Ms Bloom.
“Along the way we have had to adapt our events such as Midnight Walk, making them virtual activities, but public generosity has not wavered, meaning we can continue to provide our much needed service to patients and their families during the most difficult times in their lives.”
She added: “We are so grateful for the support we received from the community, local radio and press in helping us reach this fantastic sum.”
Highights included Georgie Veale raising £13,750 for the hospice with a 200-mile coastal horse ride in memory of her late father.
Penny Arbuthnot, director of Genesis PR, added: “We loved giving our time and expertise to create and launch the #HereTogether campaign with the amazing St Elizabeth Hospice team and are thrilled that it resonated so well with the public, inspiring an incredible amount of donations and fundraising activities.”
To find out more about St Elizabeth Hospice, call 01473 727776 or visit its website.
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