4th May 2020 | News in your area

Shooting Star Children’s Hospice

NEWS RELEASE Immediate release

Emergency appeal launched to ensure local children’s hospice Shooting Star Children’s Hospices can continue their vital service

Chief Executive of Shooting Star Children’s Hospices, Nigel Harding, is urging the community to donate what they can to the charity as they face a very real and immediate crisis due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Shooting Star Children’s Hospices provides care and support for babies, children and young people with life-limiting conditions, and their families, at both their Guildford and Hampton hospices, and through their Hospice at Home service across Surrey and London.

The local charity is a lifeline to over 700 families and the demand for their care service is forever increasing. The hospices have never been more vital to children living with complex medical conditions, and their families, who desperately need support.

Due to the unprecedented situation of the coronavirus, the charity is facing the very real reality that Shooting Star Children’s Hospices may no longer exist without urgent funding.

The charity is reliant on donations from the support and generosity of the community to keep their services running, with 90% of their income generated through fundraising. The severity of financial losses due to cancellations of events, fundraising plans and closure of their charity shops is already making an undeniable impact.

Chief Executive of Shooting Star Children’s Hospices, Nigel Harding, said, “This is by far one of the most challenging times that many of us have had to face. We are doing everything in our power to appeal to senior MP’s and health authorities to help us, but right now we are predicting a shortfall of more than £2 million in the upcoming financial year, putting the future of Shooting Star Children’s Hospices in the balance.

“To continue to be there for the babies, children and young people, and their families, who need us now and long into the future, we have already had to make the difficult decision to close one of our hospices. We have also had to prioritise those most in need, only providing end-of-life care and emergency respite. For us to maintain even this level of care, we need the help of those in the community.”

“The stark reality is, if we don’t receive financial support in the coming weeks, we could face having to stop providing end-of-life care and emergency respite too and with the pressures facing the NHS, our services for those most vulnerable in our community are needed now more than ever.

“I don’t want to sound alarmist, but put simply, without our hospices the families we support will simply have nowhere left to turn.” To support Shooting Star Children’s Hospices, please donate to their coronavirus emergency appeal by visiting www.shootingstar.org.uk/crisisappeal.

For further information, spokespeople or high resolution images please contact Aimee Royle at aimee.royle@shootingstar.org.uk or 01932 823108

Notes to editors

Shooting Star Children’s Hospices

Shooting Star Children’s Hospices cares for babies, children and young people with life-limiting conditions, and their families, throughout Surrey and across 15 boroughs of London.

Whether lives are measured in days, weeks, months or years, we are here to make every moment count. As a leading children’s hospice charity we support families from diagnosis to end of life and throughout bereavement with a range of nursing, practical, emotional and medical care.

Our bespoke support is free of charge to families and includes a named key worker, a comprehensive range of therapies and support groups for the whole family, specialist nursing care and short breaks at our two hospices (Shooting Star House in Hampton and Christopher’s in Guildford) or in the family home, symptom management, end-of-life care and bereavement support.

It costs £10 million a year to maintain our current level of care and just 10% of that income comes from government funding, so we rely on our supporters’ generosity to keep the service running. What’s more, we know there are many more families desperate for our vital support, so it’s crucial we raise more funds.

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