20th April 2018

Men’s group has funding boost from Willis Trust

A men’s patient group at St Richard’s Hospice has been boosted by a £2,000 donation from a Worcestershire Trust.

The Henry & James Willis Trust made the grant for the Men’s Space group which offers those under the care of the hospice the opportunity to take time out, go on visits, listen to guest speakers and share their experiences with others.

Group members can be given support from other St Richard’s services if they think they will be helpful, including benefits advice, counselling, complementary therapies and time with specialist doctors and nurses.

Gill Swindin and Richard Underwood from the Willis Trust visited the group and Mrs Swindin said:  “The Willis Trust was originally set up in the 1940s to provide grants to enable Worcester people to have a convalescent break.  In recent times the Trustees have looked for more ways to support those who have been ill or are living with life-changing health conditions to access information and therapies that can enhance their lives.  The Men’s Space Group is just the kind of scheme that the Trustees have in mind and they are delighted to be able to make a grant to such a worthwhile project.”

Nick Moss, who attends the group told the visitors, “This is a very outward looking, lively group – always full of banter.  It gives us a focus, enjoyment and an opportunity to share experience and fun with people in a similar position as our own.”

St Richard’s Chief Executive June Patel said, “We are very grateful to the Willis Trust for their donation to the Men’s Group. They are wonderful, inspirational group who really benefit from getting together and supporting each other.”

To join the Men’s Space group the person must have a confirmed life-limiting diagnosis; a South Worcestershire GP and be referred to St Richard’s Hospice. Anyone can refer to the group including patients themselves and hospice staff will liaise with the patient’s GP. For more information please contact the Gateway Team on 01905 763963.

Another recent visitor to the group was Mel Nicholls – GB para cyclist, and endurance wheelchair racer. Following her talk and discussion with the group she said, “I was very lucky to spend time with the most uplifting and positive group of gentlemen I can say I have ever met.

“I was honoured to be invited to chat with such an incredible supportive group; they are friends, full of banter and laughter and they support each other through the good and the bad. I was deeply moved by such an inspirational place and people. They have given me an extra spark, and I will be taking them all through my racing as my in-mind support team.”

St Richard’s Hospice provides free specialist palliative and end of life care for patients living with life-limiting illnesses and supports their loved ones. Each year the hospice team supports more than 3,000 patients, family members and bereaved people in Worcestershire.

The hospice strives to provide the best medical, practical, emotional and social support they can to help people live life to the fullest, as independently as they can, for as long as they can. They care for people with a range of illnesses including heart failure, Parkinson’s, and motor neurone disease as well as cancer.

St Richard’s is an independent charity and is grateful for all donations to help it continue its work.