Monday, 05 January 2015

The Cabinet Office has awarded £110,876 to Peace Hospice Care, who in a partnership with the Hospice of St Francis in Berkhamsted, Hertfordshire Community NHS Trust and Herts County Council will help provide compassionate support in the community.

Hosted by Peace Hospice Care, the fund will support the 'Herts Neighbours Network' which will be delivered with their bid partners.

The scheme will provide companionship and practical support to people at the end of their lives and their families, including helping them to use social media to reconnect with loved ones and was a result of a joined up bid between Peace Hospice Care, the Hospice of St Francis, Hertfordshire Community NHS Trust and Hertfordshire County Council.

An overall fund of £800,000 will go to 6 other organisations around the country to tackle loneliness and isolation, which people at the end of their life can often experience. Volunteers will be recruited to provide companionship and emotional support, as well as practical support to help people reconnect with their own communities. Winning projects include providing people with transport to community groups, or teaching people how to contact distant family members online.
Volunteers will also be able to provide advice and signpost people to other guidance they might need. A number of the shortlisted projects will work with groups who have difficulty accessing support.

 Minister for Civil Society Rob Wilson said:
 'I am delighted to announce the recipients of the Social Action End of Life Fund. Often medical appointments, care needs and financial considerations can obscure the emotional needs that people face at the end of their lives.
'These projects are great examples of how we can use volunteers within communities to make sure that nobody feels alone or unsupported, helping people live with compassion and dignity.”

Peace Hospice Care Chief Executive, Sue Plummer said, 'This is an exciting joint collaboration and we are really looking forward to seeing this programme delivered in our community. This new funding is going to play a huge part in supporting patients in a greater way who wish to die at home. We know that more people want to die in their own home as opposed to in a hospital.  This project will help address this.' 


Image left to right:  Deidre Haynes (Hertfordshire County Council), Polly Traxler (Hospice of St Francis), Jackie Tritton (Peace Hospice Care), Dr Carol Scholes (Hertfordshire Community Trust).