Can you help local families spend their final Christmas at home together?
Rennie Grove Hospice Care is planning ahead so that it can give as many patients as possible a family Christmas at home together. The charity, whose nurses provide specialist 24/7 responsive hospice at home care to adults and children in Bucks and Herts, is asking its supporters if they would be willing to make a donation towards the costs of its nursing care over Christmas.
Helen is a hospice at home nurse. She said: “What I love about Rennie Grove is that we can be there any time of the day or night, 365 days a year. And our 24-hour responsive care is never more important than at Christmas, when so many other healthcare providers offer a reduced service.”
Mandy’s family – husband Kevin, daughter Laura and son James – know first-hand how Rennie Grove’s nurses can help families spend a last Christmas together.
James explains: “I’d like to tell you about my amazing mum. You couldn’t hope to meet a kinder, more caring person. She was tiny – just 5 feet tall – but with a massive personality. She made a lasting impression on everyone she met. She had a relatively short illness, which started out with lung cancer and spread to her liver, skin and ultimately her brain. She fought it with all she could and sometimes you wouldn’t even realise she was ill. Her main aim was to get to Christmas with all her family around her.”
“Christmas was all about the traditions for mum. Since I turned 10, she’s always put the same presents in my stocking each year.”
“We had the best last Christmas. Mum had always wanted to go to her brother’s for Christmas and he invited us all round. Mum outlasted us all that day! She’d been so determined to enjoy one last family Christmas.”
“The Rennie Grove nurses made that possible. Without their constant support, practical advice and compassionate care, we wouldn’t have had the same quality time together as a family. You build a real rapport with the nurses. I used to call up for advice: should I do that? This is happening – is it OK if I do this? Just knowing they were at the end of a phone 24 hours a day, ready to visit if needed, gave us the confidence to keep caring for mum at home.
“Rennie Grove helped us from day one. And as Mandy got weaker, whatever she needed – walker, commode, bath seat, oxygen, hospital bed – the Rennie Grove nurses would make arrangements and it would be here within 24 hours. They always took the time to talk to all of us. You could tell they really cared.
“Mum felt that too. Her face would light up when we said the Rennie Grove nurses were coming. It was like her mates were coming round. She knew she could tell them anything.
“We can’t thank Rennie Grove enough for enabling us to make happy memories in those final days of mum’s life. Thanks to them, mum lived the life she wanted to until the very end, and passed away peacefully in her home with her family around her. Christmas is going to be hard this year, but those memories will help us get through it.”
Without your help Rennie Grove could not provide its specialist care in patients’ homes at any time of the day or night. So the charity would like to ask for your help this Christmas. Please can you spare whatever you can afford to make a difference to families preparing for their last Christmas together?
£25 will pay for one of hour of nursing care for a patient like Mandy. Rennie Grove needs to find £21,000 every day to help all those who need them and your help towards this will make a real difference.
You can donate securely at renniegrove.org/christmastogether19 or by calling 01442 890222 if you prefer to donate over the phone.
With your help Rennie Grove can make every moment matter for its patients and their families this festive season. Thank you.