Spring Appeal 2022

Help us continue to provide specialist care for local families.

My name is Louise Robinson and I’m a Nursing Team Leader in the Hospice In-Patient Unit at Somerton House, Belfast. I love working at Hospice and being part of an amazing care team, from doctors to physios, social workers and housekeepers - we all work together to make sure our patients and their families receive the very best care possible.

It’s an enormous responsibility as many of our patients are coming to the end of their lives, but it’s also an honour and privilege to be able to help when people need it most.

It’s been a tough few years for us at Hospice. We had to change the way we care because of COVID-19 – it’s the things we used to take for granted – suddenly we couldn’t even give a hug to give comfort!! It really was a massive shock to us and I’m sure you have similar stories too. COVID-19 has changed everyone’s lives and I am hoping it won’t be too long before we can return to a normal way of life.

But we never let COVID beat us. Here at Hospice, we kept going and we put our patients first and we did everything we could to make their stay as easy as possible – and we never shut our doors to visitors. Even though it would have been easier for us to stop visiting, we worked together to make sure families could be with their loved ones during their last days.

We are there to help.

I think the pandemic has given me a new appreciation for the care we provide – I’ve seen patients come into Hospice who are very, very, ill and without us they may have died in hospital alone or at home in terrible pain.

I remember we cared for a patient who was crawling on the floor at home in agony, which was horrific for him but also traumatic for his family. When we admitted him, we were able to get his pain under control and manage the many complex symptoms he had, his family were able to be with him and see him improve until finally he was able to go home, where he died peacefully. Without the care he received at Hospice it would have been a very different story for that family, thank goodness we were here to help them.

Hospice care is more than simply treating the health condition, it’s all about the person and their family and what they need and want.

We wrap our care around everyone, a common phrase you’ll hear around Hospice is - we can’t change the ending but we can make a difference to the journey and making a difference is something we strive for every day.

I hope you can take the time to read about how Hospice helped when Joanne was so very ill and what it means to her family and friends. I’m honoured that we made a difference to their lives.

Read Joanne's Story

How your support can help

If you are able to continue to support us it would mean so much to your community. This year, we have seen referrals to our service grow and over the last 10 months we’ve cared for around 3,500 people. Your help can make all the difference. We appreciate every single donation we receive, and I know that it really does change people’s lives.

To give you an idea of some of our costs, one hour of care in our In-Patient Unit costs £29.79, three sets of scrubs for one nurse to help keep our In-Patient Unit free of the COVID-19 virus costs £60.75, and it costs the Hospice £178.03 for a specialist nurse to visit a patient at home

By donating to this essential service, we can continue to provide high-quality and compassionate palliative care to local people in our community who need it most. Thank you.