St Clare campaigns during Hospice Care Week

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St Clare Dunmow shop joining the #WeAreHospiceCare campaign for Hospice Care Week 2017
Published on: Thursday 19 Oct 2017 at 09:00

Hospice Care Week was a success for St Clare!

Throughout the course of Hospice Care Week (9th – 15th October), St Clare campaigned to raise awareness of hospice care in a bid to support more local people, who are facing a life-limiting illness, than ever before.

Hospice Care Week is an annual, national campaign led by the charity Hospice UK, aiming to challenge perceptions of hospices and educate people about palliative care. With up to 200 hospices across the UK participating, this year’s theme, ‘We are hospice care,’ celebrated the diverse range of people involved in providing and supporting hospice care.

Launching a new section of our website entitled ‘Our stories,’ we published five interviews with members of clinical staff, detailing their day-to-day roles working at St Clare, supporting local people. Featured staff members were: Erica Martin, Clinical Nurse Specialist in Palliative Care; Lynne Hooper, Inpatient Unit Team Leader; Michele Tavarone, Social Worker; Rachel Jacobs, Hospice at Home Team Leader; and Jane Iskander, Occupational Therapist.

The interviews were well-received on social media, where many members of the public spoke up about their experience with St Clare and the care they received from staff, who supported them during one of life’s most difficult journeys. Read the full interviews here: www.stclarehospice.org.uk/category/our-stories

On 10th October a ‘Breakfast with St Clare’ event for local health, social and voluntary care professionals, was held at the Hospice in Hastingwood with more than 40 people in attendance. The event was hosted by St Clare Patron, Dame Claire Bertschinger DBE, Deputy Lieutenant of Hertfordshire, who is best known for her role in highlighting the famine in Ethiopia which led to the 1985 Live Aid campaign.

The event welcomed local health sector professionals to the Hospice centre to learn more about the diversity of hospice care, and to find out how they can refer more of their patients and clients to St Clare. The morning featured speeches from St Clare Chief Executive, Sarah Thompson, and Dame Claire Bertschinger, who spoke openly about her experience with St Clare, when we cared for her mother back in 2013.

Our eight charity shops, which are amongst 2,000 hospice charity shops nationwide, also joined the campaign celebrations with themed window displays. The campaign featured giant gift-tags displayed throughout the shops, labelling the genuine price of care services in relation to the price of items on sale in the shop and highlighting the difference that shopping in our stores makes to real, local people in need.

St Clare’s over-arching #WeAreHospiceCare Twitter campaign was also met with notable interaction. Tweets revealed the real-life difference that receiving hospice care services can make to people and their families facing a palliative prognosis, including: “My little girl was able to have her first sleepover with her Nanny at St Clare,” and “St Clare helped me to walk into my garden to hear the birds sing”.

St Clare Communications Manager, Rebecca Hedges, said:

“For St Clare, Hospice Care Week is every week. It is our aim to offer care and support to everyone who needs it in West Essex and East Herts, and we are only able to achieve that by educating and informing both local clinical professionals, and the public, on the varied ways in which the hospice can assist when a person is facing a life-limiting illness. Challenging perceptions of hospice care, and championing the message that St Clare’s care is about life and living, is integral to engaging with and improving the lives of more people in need in our local community. That is our message all year round, it is not a message ‘just’ for Hospice Care Week!”

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