Hospice campaign reaches halfway mark

THE East Anglian Daily Times' campaign to raise £100,000 for St Elizabeth Hospice in Ipswich has sailed past the halfway mark.Make Each Day Count was launched at the beginning of February to help raise crucial funds for the Foxhall Road-based charity.

THE East Anglian Daily Times' campaign to raise £100,000 for St Elizabeth Hospice in Ipswich has sailed past the halfway mark.

Make Each Day Count was launched at the beginning of February to help raise crucial funds for the Foxhall Road-based charity.

So far generous readers have pledged £52,192 that will be used to provide vital care and support for individuals with a life limiting illness and their family and friends.

Today also sees the start of a new “Hospice Diary” which will appear in the paper every Monday and describes some of the experiences of patients and their relatives and the services available.

St Elizabeth is heavily dependent on donations and has to raise £4.2million every year if its staff and volunteers are to continue this valuable service in east Suffolk.

Alison Lanchester, director of income and marketing at St Elizabeth, said: “We have received fabulous support from the community so far and £50,000 is a tremendous amount. We hope people will continue to support the hospice and help us to reach the target of £100,000.”

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Terry Hunt, EADT editor, said: “I'm delighted that the appeal total has passed the halfway mark, thanks to the generosity and hard work of so many of our readers. I'm confident that, with their continued support, we can now march on towards the £100,000 target.''

People from across the region have organised events and taken part in sponsored challenges in a bid to raise cash for the campaign.

From marathon runs and mountain treks to cake sales and head shaves everyone has been doing their bit for the cause.

The total includes money from 10-year-olds Callum Fray, Oliver Johns, Josh McLean and Ellyn Friar who asked their friends to donate money to the campaign instead of receiving birthday presents.

The children, from Gorseland School, Martlesham, raised a total of £650 at their birthday disco, which was held last week at Kesgrave Community Centre.

Callum's mum, Sally, said: “The children are lucky enough between them to have most the things they want but they also - even at this young age - know of people who have had cancer and felt that donating money to the charity was a nice way to show their support and understanding.”

Meanwhile £3,000 has come in from Hughes Electrical who held a sponsored cycle ride and more than £8,000 has been raised through an Enduring Powers of Attorney promotion run with Watkins, Stewart and Ross solicitors in Ipswich.

Solicitor John Annis said: “We're very pleased with the response that we've had and there's still money coming in so we should be able to add to the total.”

And with three more months left until Christmas, hospice bosses are hoping kind-hearted readers continue their fundraising efforts in a bid to make a push towards the overall total before the New Year.