THE £1m target is tantalisingly close – and now there is a call for one last push to make Dorothy’s Dream come true.
Today marks one year since the Rowans Hospice, in Purbrook, launched the pilot of its hospice at home appeal.
The service gives people with life-threatening illnesses the option to spend their final days in their own home surrounded by friends and family.
Since the pilot started last September, 300 families have been supported by the service and £883,000 has been raised.
But readers are being asked to get behind one final push to raise the remaining £117,000 in order to complete the pilot, which is due to end next June.
Ruth White, chief executive for the Purbrook hospice, said: ‘I would like to offer my sincere appreciation and gratitude to readers of The News, who have contributed to the success of the appeal in helping us raise £883,000 to date.
‘People have achieved this by taking part in fundraising events, bought raffle tickets and supported directly with personal donations – many of which have been in memory of those who have been cared for through this new service. The £1m is now in our sights.
‘I would like to take this opportunity to invite you to consider how you may be able to help us reach the target, which will support service costs beyond the initial pilot and into the future.
‘We do believe this service has an important role to play in our health economy and as I am sure you will agree that this work is significant and most beneficial to our community.’
The Dorothy’s Dream appeal’s name was inspired by the phrase ‘there’s no place like home’ from The Wizard of Oz.
Staff at the Rowans work closely with GPs, district nurses and charities to help people remain at home, avoiding unnecessary hospital admissions.
Dr Allan Allcock, senior partner at The Health House surgery, in Wootton Street, Cosham, backs the pilot and praised the service.
He said: ‘This new service has given excellent care to patients of my practice needing intensive support to enable them to die peacefully and with dignity at home. This service has been greatly appreciated by patients’ relatives.
‘Access to the service has been easily achieved and the response very rapid. The Hospice at Home team has worked well with district nurses and GPs. I hope the service will continue.’
To find out more about the service, or to donate, go to rowanshospice.co.uk