Importance of fundraising

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I’ve shared many stories about individuals and companies in our local community, along with staff at Harrogate and District NHS Foundation Trust doing amazing things to raise funds to help us make a difference for our patients, their families and our staff. But what does that mean? What impact does all this fantastic fundraising have?

Harrogate Hospital and Community Charity aims to make a difference across the Trust’s wards and departments and with this in mind I would like to share some of the wonderful things that we have been able to do because of the magnificent support that you give to your local hospital charity.

In our Special Care Baby Unit, with the fantastic support of The Rainbow Fund, and Variety, The Children’s Charity, we were able to fund a transport incubator. This vital piece of equipment provides a lifeline for critically ill babies as it enables the safe transfer of babies who require treatment at specialist units across England, or in other areas of the hospital. By having one on site, babies are able to be moved without the need to wait for kit to arrive from another hospital, saving critical time.

In November the Palliative Care team started to provide comfort bags to help improve the comfort of relatives staying in Harrogate District Hospital for long periods or overnight. The bags include items such as earplugs, tissues, notebooks, toiletries, a blanket and a neck pillow. They are all things that they may forget to bring if they are in a hurry, or have come in unexpectedly, and are designed to provide a little comfort for relatives of patients at the end of their lives. We are also delighted to also have support from Boroughbridge and Rosset high schools whose pupils are helping to prepare the bags.

Our two main elderly care wards, Jervaulx and Byland, have benefited from the purchase of new dementia-friendly, colour-coded lockers throughout the wards. Bought with funds raised by the Friends of Harrogate Hospital and Community Charity, these lockers, along with colour coded bays on the ward, help to ensure patients become familiar with their surroundings, and know how to make their way back to their bed. They are also fitted with keyless locks, accessed by staff with a swipe card.

These are just a few of the things that we have been able to fund because of your fantastic support, with other examples including the ongoing funding of the Complementary Therapy Service at the Sir Robert Ogden Macmillan Cancer Centre, and the refurbishment of the Children’s Outpatient Department which has just been completed. We are currently planning for the refurbishment of the playroom in our Woodlands Ward thanks to the wonderful support of Belmont Grosvenor School, Birstwith, who raised £10,000 for us as their charity of the year in 2017. In addition, we are also in the process of installing a new state of the art £600,000 nuclear CT scanner, with a specification only seen in three other UK hospitals, all in London.

As you can see, the impact of the donations, fundraising, and support from the local community is huge, and felt right across the hospital. With the support from the local Harrogate community, we are able to make a difference to patient care, the patient experience and also make a difference to how our staff are able to provide their care.

To find out more on how to help visit: www.hdft.nhs.uk/hhcc or contacting us on 01423 555641.