Crosby Herald, 4 August 2011
A dream to revamp a building at Jospice has become a reality following an appeal launched by Cherie Blair.
The Golden Jubilee Appeal aimed to raise £1m for the refurbishment of The Academy at the site in Thornton.
In less than a year £920,000 was raised to fund the work, following a £600,000 grant from the Department of Health as well as donations from trusts, businesses and local people.
Bishop Tom Williams unveiled the new centre at a special ceremony and the building has been renamed St Francis House in memory of Jospice founder Father Francis O’Leary.
Father O’Leary died on the Feast of St Francis, who was the patron saint of animals and as the site is surrounded by wildlife, it was felt it was an appropriate name.
It houses eighteen en-suite bedrooms and will allow Jospice to provide care for an extra 50 people a year.
Pat Murphy, director of fundraising at Jospice, said: “Visitors and patients are delighted with it, as are the staff.
“It is much better for patients to have their own privacy and have that dignity.”
“Cherie is hoping to come and see the building later this year.
“I would like to say a big thank you to everybody who has helped us this far in the Golden Jubilee Appeal.”
The hospice will continue its general fundraising this year to pay for its running costs and will re-launch the Golden Jubilee Appeal next year, as it celebrates its 50th anniversary.
The aim is to raise a further £500,000 for new heating and en-suite bathrooms for the rest of the hospice.
Pat added: “We know things aren’t easy in the current economic climate but we would ask people to continue to support us leading into our jubilee year.”
Call Jospice on 0151 932 6024.
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