Hospice appeals for £1million

Cotswold Journal: Mike and Fiona Illingworth with their sons Ben (left) and Ollie (right), a family supported by the hospice. Mike and Fiona Illingworth with their sons Ben (left) and Ollie (right), a family supported by the hospice.

A CHILDREN'S hospice which has cared for youngsters for more than three decades is appealing for help to raise £1million for a major refurbishment.

Charity Helen & Douglas House, which supports families in Chipping Norton, urgently needs to upgrade its facilities at Helen House.

Its plans include widening corridors to make access to rooms easier, installing piped oxygen and suctioning equipment in each bedroom for children with breathing and swallowing difficulties and creating a bigger reception area.

There are also plans for new kitchen and dining facilities and improving the play and therapy areas.

The charity, based just outside Oxford, has received £436,000 from NHS England to do some of the work but needs additional funds to complete further essential refurbishment.

Alison Hooker, Cotswold Community Fundraiser for Helen & Douglas House, said: ‘With 31 years of constant wear and tear Helen House was looking very tired.

"Building hospices is one thing, maintaining them and meeting the running costs year after year is another.

"Our charity only receives 15 per cent of annual running costs from the NHS and other statutory bodies. The rest is raised through voluntary donations.

"Without our fabulous supporters and volunteers across the region, Helen & Douglas House simply could not function."

For details or to help, visit helenanddouglas.org.uk, email fundraising@helenanddouglas.org.uk, or call 01865 799150.

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