Please give what you can to such a special cause

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One year ago Dorothy’s Dream was just that – a dream. But today we reveal how the hospice at home appeal launched by The Rowans Hospice in Purbrook has raised an amazing £883,000.

That money has meant a pilot scheme, enabling people with life-threatening illnesses to spend their final days in their own home surrounded by friends and family, has been running since last September. Now the push is on to bring in the remaining £117,000 to reach the original target of £1m and support service costs into the future.

The Dorothy’s Dream appeal has been a great success and, as Rowans chief executive Ruth White says, that is down to the generosity of all those people who have held fundraising events, bought raffle tickets and made personal donations – often in memory of those cared for through this new service.

They should all be very proud of what they have helped to achieve. Because the hospice at home service is a wonderful addition to healthcare in our communities, allowing patients to die peacefully and with dignity.

The Dorothy’s Dream appeal name was inspired by the phrase ‘there’s no place like home’ from The Wizard of Oz. That ethos lies at the heart of what The Rowans is doing, working closely with GPs, district nurses and charities to help people stay in familiar surroundings rather than being admitted to hospital.

Don’t take our word for it. On pages 12 and 13 today we feature the stories of relatives of those who have been helped by the hospice at home service and who want to express their gratitude.

Nineteen-year-old Maddie Bush sadly lost her grandmother, Joan Bush, who died of pancreatic cancer in May this year. Joan’s last wish was to be able to pass away peacefully at home surrounded by her loved ones and Maddie says: ‘We are so grateful for everything they did for us and my nan.’

To say thank-you, Maddie took part in a skydive and raised £560 for Dorothy’s Dream.

As the appeal continues in an effort to hit the magic £1m mark, we urge you all to give whatever you can to this excellent cause.