Pontefract family back our Yorkshire hospices appeal

The Yorkshire Children's Hospices Appeal
The Yorkshire Children's Hospices Appeal

An 18-year-old Pontefract girl with a life-limiting illness is one of nearly 1,000 young people supported by Yorkshire’s three children’s hospices - and our new appeal will help more to benefit from their vital work.

Today the Express announces a unique partnership aiming to enable the families of seriously ill children such as Holly Walker from Badsworth, who has a neurological disorder, make the most of their precious time together.

The newspaper, and sister titles across the region, are to raise money for the three Yorkshire children’s hospices for the next 12 months.

For the first time, Forget-me-Not in Huddersfield, Martin House in Boston Spa and Bluebell Wood in Sheffield are teaming up to jointly benefit.

And we need the help of our readers to reach our £30,000 target so the hospices can continue their excellent work supporting the families of nearly 1,000 children and young people with life-shortening conditions.

Every year the hospices need to raise more than £13m in total because only 10 per cent of their funding comes from the Government.

Our appeal could make a huge difference by providing nursing care, a vital break or support at home for families in the most difficult situations.

The Yorkshire Children’s Hospices Appeal, backed by Johnston Press publications in the region, aims to help bring some light and laughter to the lives of these families.

James Mitchinson, editorial director of Johnston Press’s Yorkshire titles, said: “These three children’s hospices do incredible work.

“They are there every step of the way for families living through the toughest of times, not only at the end of life but throughout the journey.

“Having heard about the amazing services they offer and the difference their support makes, we were keen to give our backing and we hope our readers will help to make the appeal a huge success.”

Angela Monaghan, chief executive at Martin House Children’s Hospice, said they were all delighted to be involved.

“This is a very exciting time for the three children’s hospices across the county and we are pleased to be part of the Yorkshire Children’s Hospices’ Appeal.

“Thanks so much for your backing - money raised will enable us to continue our care and support 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

“The family is always placed at the forefront of everything that we do and our support can be a lifeline for families facing challenges that they never imagined they would have to face.”

Every single pound raised through the appeal will make a big difference - and to start the appeal, we’re asking readers to show they care by holding a Valentine’s Day cake sale.

Simply holding a coffee morning could raise enough to send a family on a day trip, give a child a hydrotherapy session or even allow a member of a hospice’s community team to pay a much-needed home visit.

Claire Rintoul, chief executive of Bluebell Wood Children’s Hospice, said: “Across Yorkshire, our three children’s hospices make a really positive difference to the lives of hundreds of families facing incredibly tough times.

“The children and young adults we collectively support are so amazing and we are focused completely on helping them to create special, lasting memories.”

“This partnership approach with Johnston Press will give our fantastic families, volunteers, supporters and staff teams a chance to have their voice heard.”

“We’re looking forward to an exciting year ahead with Johnston Press – thanks so much for your support, it will help us to continue our work providing support both in our hospice buildings and in family homes.”

Peter Branson, chief executive of Forget Me Not Children’s Hospice, added that they were delighted to be chosen to benefit.

“I am really looking forward to looking back a year from now and celebrating what we have managed to achieve together,” he said.