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Sunflower Appeal for new Day Hospice

Sunflower AppealFor the first ten years, St Michael's had run a Day Hospice in a room on the ground floor. In the mid 1990's it became apparent that bigger and better facilities were needed.

When John Caiger of the then Development Trust asked Elizabeth Drew in March 1996 if she would chair the appeal to raise funds to build the new Day Hospice she said "Oh no, I couldn't possibly do it - no one knows me, I've never done anything like this before..." In less than 18 months, Elizabeth, together with James Greenfield, the Appeal Co-ordinator, Lady Dunne the Appeal's President, Mrs Sally Clive, the Appeal's Vice President, and a dedicated committee of 12, raised £600,000 and saw the project completed.

A purpose-built, three storey Day Hospice, including a suite of rooms for offices and meetings, was built onto the existing building. Elizabeth remembers the launch vividly "it was held in College Hall, Hereford Cathedral on 14th June 1996 - a beautiful, sunny day. We already had nearly £200,000 in the kitty and were thrilled when Viscount Portman surprised us all with a donation of £35,000." Richard Miller cut the first sod in August 1996 and the Day Hospice was completed and in use by June 1997. On 29th July 1997 Princess Alexandra officially opened it.

The success of the Sunflower Appeal has meant that up to 70 different people each week can be cared for, monitored and given symptom control. To many this is a lifeline that means that they can stay in their own homes for longer. Attending Day Hospice is also a social occasion filled with fun, laughter and activities. Hazel Brooke, Day Hospice Sister said, "people never want to come here and then they never want to leave..."

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01432 851000

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St Michael's Hospice, Bartestree, Hereford, HR1 4HA

Registered charity number: 511179