THE Rowans Hospice’s Big Push got a big boost as more than 1,000 people turned out to support its annual summer fete.
The fete was held on Purbrook Heath, opposite the hospice yesterday afternoon and people from across the area turned up to show their support.
It came as the hospice’s Big Push fundraiser aims to raise the remaining £279,000 needed to get to its £1m target for the Dorothy’s Dream appeal.
The cash will set up a hospice at home service to help people who wish to spend their final days in the comfort of their own home.
The mayor of Havant, Councillor Ken Smith, opened the fete.
He said: ‘The Rowans is one of our two main charities this year. They do a wonderful job. We want to encourage them and support them in any way we can.
‘This is a lovely fete and I am really delighted to be here.’
Ali George, event fundraiser, said: ‘It’s really about giving the community an opportunity to come out and have some fun and hopefully raise some money for the hospice.
‘It’s important because it gives something back to the community but it also gives the community the opportunity to get involved in a different way.
‘Despite the weather we had a really good time.
‘We are so delighted with everybody who did come and support us.’
There were events throughout the afternoon including Scottish dancers, an appearance from the Royal Marine cadet drill squad and a dog show;.
Lesley Sparey, 53, from Hilsea, lost her partner Melvyn Slocomb earlier this year.
He was cared for at The Rowans Hospice after suffering from prostate cancer.
‘The work is fantastic,’ she said.
‘They are so dedicated to their jobs and what they do.
‘We couldn’t have asked for better treatment.’
It’s not yet known how much was raised on the day.
This Saturday will see teams of Rowans’ staff and volunteers push a bed from the hospice to Canoe Lake in Southsea in a fundraising drive for the appeal.
If you would like to hold a Big Push event, email fundraising at rowanshospice.co.uk or call (023) 9223 8531.