Cumbrian firm one of first to sign up to new hospice fundraising initiative

A CUMBRIAN-based business is backing a new initiative to raise funds for Eden Valley Hospice and Jigsaw, Cumbria’s Children’s Hospice in Carlisle.

WCF was one of the first companies to sign up to the Club 24 initiative where businesses donate the equivalent cost of a patient’s 24-hour stay at the hospice.

The new initiative invites businesses to pledge £877 per year, or £73.08 per month, to cover the cost of round-the-clock patient care.

Jo Ritzema, Managing Director of Brampton-based WCF, said: “As a business very much rooted in Cumbria, we make it a priority to support organisations such as Eden Valley Hospice and Jigsaw which make a huge difference to our communities.

“The Club 24 initiative is a brilliant way for businesses to support the work they do, and ensure that people across Cumbria continue to receive the vital services they provide to patients and their families.”

Jo is encouraging other businesses to show their support and sign up for Club 24.

She said: “We’ve supported Eden Valley Hospice and Jigsaw for a number of years through fundraising and volunteering, as well as providing practical support such as supplying wild bird food for the gardens free of charge through our WCF Pet & Equestrian store in Carlisle.

“As a part employee-owned business, we champion charities which are important to our team and the communities in which they live. Initiatives such as Club 24 are a great way for businesses to get involved and make a positive difference.”

Since its launch in April around a dozen businesses have joined Club 24 which brings a host of benefits for firms including invitations to networking events and early access to sponsorship and volunteering opportunities.

Martha Pardoe, Relationship Fundraiser with Eden Valley Hospice and Jigsaw, said: “We are so grateful for WCF’s ongoing support, most recently in being one of the first members of Club 24. Joining Club 24 is a valuable way for a business to make a real difference to a local family’s life by donating the cost of 24 hours for a patient at the hospice. Whilst a small amount of time for many of us, 24 hours truly means everything to those who we care for at Eden Valley Hospice and Jigsaw, Cumbria’s Children’s Hospice. Whilst knowing you have made an impact, we are also proud to offer a range of benefits to Club 24 members including ways to engage staff, networking with other businesses and PR opportunities.”

Based on Durdar Road in Carlisle, Eden Valley Hospice provides specialist care for adults in north Cumbria who have life-limiting conditions, as well as providing care for their families, friends and carers. Jigsaw, Cumbria’s Children’s Hospice, which is based on the same site, provides care, support and activities to children and young people from across the county living with a life-limiting illness.

It costs £4.8 million a year to run Eden Valley Hospice and Jigsaw, Cumbria’s Children’s Hospice, with around 80% funded by voluntary donations from individuals, businesses and community groups. The other 20% comes from NHS grants.

WCF operates across the UK in the retail, logistics and leisure sectors. Its Cumbrian-based operations include five WCF Pet & Equestrian stores at Carlisle, Penrith, Wigton, Cockermouth and Ulverston; a nationwide mail-order shopping business based at its head office in Brampton; and Allan Stobart Lubricants and Fuels and WCF Fuels North West which supply customers in Cumbria with bulk heating oil.

To find out more about Club 24 visit www.edenvalleyhospice.org

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