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Hospice’s bold aim to reach every child who needs its help
ACORNS Children’s Hospice aims to increase its care to reach 50 per cent more children in the Midlands under ambitious expansion plans.
Unveiling a new, five-year growth strategy, chief executive David Strudley said he believed providing respite care in families’ homes will help achieve the hospice’s vision of providing care and support to every child and young person with a life-limiting or life-threatening condition in the region.
Currently the charity, which is celebrating its 25th anniversary this year, cares for 640 youngsters but it is hoped that number will increase to 960 by 2018.
The ambitious plan will be financed by a combination of statutory funding from the NHS, central and local government and an increase in fund-raising.
It is also hoped 23 new shops will also be opened across the five years, boosting income.
Mr Strudley said that after the financial crisis four years ago the charity had to cut back on what it wanted to do and go into survival mode, but was now back on a sound financial footing.
“By September last year we realised we had to fulfil our vision and find a way to make this happen because the particular issue for children with life-limited conditions is that their conditions are so unstable and very unpredictable that we have to get on with it,” he said.
The at-home service would help by providing families with respite for about four hours, once or twice a week, he said.
A detailed review of the current provisions will also be carried out to see how care at their hospices, including Bath Road, Worcester, can be extended.
Mr Strudley said: “This community has always said that if you are looking after these children then we are going to support what you are doing. It is why we know the community will help us achieve our strategy and we need to show them what that help will look like.”
During its anniversary year the hospice is hoping to create a living history made up of people’s experiences including written memories, video footage and photographs.
Anyone wishing to submit items should email firstname.lastname@example.org or by post to 25 years of caring, Acorns Children’s Hospice, Drakes Court, Alcester Road, Wythall, B47 6JR.