Inspected and rated

Care Quality Commission - CQC

Covid-19 Appeal: We urgently need your support

Dr Karen Steadman
Medical Director, Weldmar Hospicecare

My name is Dr Karen Steadman and I am the Medical Director at Weldmar Hospicecare.

Covid-19 has come out of nowhere and the impact that it is having on our charity is frightening.

Our doctors, nurses and other health care professionals who make Weldmar who we are, are continuing to work right on the front line throughout this pandemic. We are caring for those very patients who are most at risk and vulnerable – and this unprecedented demand is only going to increase, along with the added complexities that come with the Coronavirus.

We have always been proud to offer and provide the highest quality compassionate care and we will always do everything in our power to ensure that this continues. However, funding has stopped.  Our chain of 26 charity stores have closed and our fundraising team have been left with no choice other than to cancel all of our events up until the end of May – and it is likely that this will need to be extended. This could come at a destructive cost to the charity, it is deeply concerning.

I need to work with my colleagues to ensure that we can continue our services throughout Covid-19 and secure our care for generations to come. Right now, I am very concerned. We know that over the coming days and weeks, we are going to have to change how we provide our care, to ensure we can continue to help as many people in our community as possible. However, I need those decisions to be based on what is right for the patient not whether we can afford it.

I want our decisions to be based on comfort, love and compassion, to ensure that every patient’s last days continue to be dignified, peaceful and comfortable.

I want us to continue to ensure that we can be here for everyone who needs us, no matter what their circumstances and support them and their loved ones through one of life’s most difficult journeys.

But right now, we are facing a financial crisis. Can you help with our Covid-19 Appeal? We need to raise £18,000 every single day to keep our services running and providing these free of charge to everyone who needs us. Right now, we’re raising less than 10% of what we need each day to keep providing our care. Income has come to a dramatic halt, but I’ve still got patients who need us now.

In time, things will hopefully get back to normal. But our patients don’t have time – they need our help right now.

And now, more than ever, we need you.

I have never been prouder of the whole team at Weldmar Hospicecare, from our Doctors and Nurses who are continuing to go above and beyond, to our retail staff who have been redeployed to roles within the hospice to help keep our doors open. Everyone is pulling together to do everything they can so we can continue to do what we are great at, and most importantly, what we are vitally needed for.

We are one big family here at Weldmar and times like this really do show how we pull together to do everything possible to keep our doors open and ensure our care and support continues.

I know that this is a big ask, when many people across the county are facing their own personal challenges. But without us, over 2,800 people each and every year would not receive our care and support. I’m really sorry to be asking for your support at such a difficult time, but we’ve simply been left with no choice.

My promise in return to you is that I will ensure that your donation goes directly to continuing invaluable end of life care to patients who need us right now here in Dorset. You will be part of our lifeline to continue to add life to each patient’s last days so we can treat them and their loved ones with the respect, dignity and comfort that they deserve.

Finally, I want to say thank you. I have worked at the hospice for nearly 20 years and I have always been amazed by the continued support we have received from people like you. I want to send my warmest of wishes to you and your family at this challenging time. I really hope you are able to help with our Covid-19 appeal.

Please stay safe and from all of us at Weldmar Hospicecare, and most importantly on behalf of our patients, thank you.

Karen

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