Hospice taking its annual Christmas events online

By Simon Hart

St Joseph’s Hospice is planning its usual Christmas events this year – and hopes that you can join in from your homes.

Both the Christmas Ladies Day and Light up a Life service will take place between now and 4 December, and the Thornton-based hospice is inviting Pic readers to participate. Ladies Day at Home has been created as part of the hospice’s 2gether Appeal, helping to sustain the future of St Joseph’s.

Maxine Armstrong, the head of fundraising, has invited people to get involved by holding their own Ladies Day. She said: ‘We all need to let our hair down and this year is no exception. Plus, there’ll be no need for taxis and, for one year only, you can involve the men in your life too! Your event can take place whenever you want between now and Sunday 29 November and you can make it as elaborate as you’d like. Get your glad rags on, put the bubbles on ice and prepare some tasty nibbles or even a full-on gourmet meal. Send us a photo of you and your friends or family enjoying Ladies Day at home and we'll enter you in to a special prize draw. But please only send photos that you’re happy for us to share online.’

On 29 November, when Christmas Ladies Day would have taken place, the hospice will stage activities on its Facebook page including a raffle, the prize draw and an online Christmas market.

Maxine Armstrong added: ‘Please remember to make sure you hold your Ladies Day at Home in accordance with current Government guidelines. Or, why not join together with friends and family online by having a virtual party? Please support the hospice at this incredibly challenging time. Your donations are particularly important to our patients and their families this year.’

She also highlighted the launch of the annual Light up a Life appeal, which will conclude on 4 December with a Christmas service, when the hospice’s tree lights will be switched on. This will be pre-recorded in order to allow families to join in online.

This year, to reflect the fact so many families have been kept apart due to Covid-19, the hospice has extended Light up a Life so that even more people can make a special dedication to loved ones. ‘Most of us have missed someone during the crisis, a cherished family member or friend,’ she said.

‘Some of us have missed contact with our loved ones, others have lost someone during the year or in previous years that they still miss very much. By choosing to make a dedication to Light up a Life, you’re not only remembering your loved ones but helping to support and fund all the vital work the hospice does for our community. The lights on our Christmas tree will recognise every dedication made and everyone who makes a dedication will also receive a card.’

To find out more about Light up a Life, or to make a dedication, visit www.jospice.org.uk, call 0151 932 6044 or email fundraising@jospice.org.uk.