Charity Focus: NCH&C supports NHS patients and staff
10:00 a.m. July 2, 2022
As part of our drive to support local charities, this week we highlight the important support provided by the Norfolk Community Health and Care NHS Trust Charitable Fund.
About the charity
There are over 230 NHS Charities currently operating in the UK. While all NHS organizations receive government funding, fundraising through charity helps NHS trusts push their budgets forward. These organizations exist to provide additional support for patients and staff, beyond what can usually be funded by the NHS. Most NHS trusts have their own registered charity, including us: Norfolk Community Health & Care NHS Trust (NCH&C).
Operating across Norfolk, NCH&C provides health and care support to patients of all ages within their local communities. We operate out of doctors’ offices, schools, patient homes and our community hospitals. The NCH&C Charitable Fund manages charitable donations and works with trusted clinicians to fund initiatives that will most benefit patients and staff.
Over the past two years, many NHS charities have diverted much of their funding to meet the immediate practical and emotional needs of staff and patients during the pandemic. This helped reduce pressure on an overstretched health service. During the height of COVID, our charity fund supported many initiatives to support patients, staff and volunteers during this incredibly difficult time. Projects included patient wellbeing support, digital rehabilitation music therapy, mental health training for staff, devices for isolated patients to stay in touch with loved ones, specialist equipment and funding for volunteers .
Beyond the pandemic, the Charitable Fund is raising funds to improve the patient experience at NCH&C. Most notably, the charity has funded several redevelopments at trust sites, including the installation of garden rooms at Kelling Hospital and Dereham Hospital. These spaces allow staff, patients and visitors to get away from the wards to relax, which is very important for well-being and recovery.
Our funding also allows NCH&C to provide specialized equipment and services that would not otherwise be possible. In 2021, the Charitable Fund funded 12 months of music therapy: an alternative treatment that isn’t always available on the NHS, but can be hugely beneficial for brain injury and stroke rehabilitation. The fund has also paid for dementia-friendly clocks and catering equipment, to try to make hospital stays less distressing for dementia patients.
We always want to do more for our patients, and with your support, we can do more when they need us most.
Spokes for Strokes raises £6,000 for NCH&C charity fund
Following a major stroke in October 2019, Liane Miles, 50, from Hadleigh, Suffolk, spent ten months recovering in the brain injury unit at NCH&C, Caroline House. The specialist rehabilitation team supported Liane as she regained her ability to eat, talk and walk.
After just a few months at Caroline House, the first nationwide lockdown meant Liane could not receive any visitors. Caroline House staff have been working hard to keep spirits up, helping Liane and other patients use social media to stay in touch with loved ones.
Liane reflected on her rehabilitation at Caroline House:
“Although it was a very difficult time for me, the team at Caroline House made my time there easier and more bearable. They all know how to get you out of the pit when you’re feeling gloomy and put a smile on your face. They are so committed to your recovery that they will gently push you to achieve your goals, even if you don’t feel capable of doing so.I’m impressed with how positive they stay in the face of very difficult situations. They are hard-working heroes who need help making their professional lives a little less stressful.”
Back home with her family, Liane knew she wanted to raise money for Caroline House to thank all the staff who had supported her through her recovery. Liane organized Spokes for Strokes: a sponsored bike ride from Ipswich Hospital to Caroline House and back. More than 70 cyclists took part in the sponsored 100 mile cycle in September 2021. Together they raised £15,100 for Caroline House and the stroke unit at Ipswich Hospital. Around £6,000 of that will go directly to Caroline House.
Carol Plunkett, Charity Development and Project Manager at NCH&C’s Charitable Fund, explained the difference Liane’s fundraising has made for Caroline House:
“The Liane-sponsored cycle will directly benefit future patients rehabilitating at Caroline House. NCH&C can now purchase extremely specialized physiotherapy equipment which would not have been possible without Spokes for Strokes. It’s a fantastic testament to the skill and care of our staff when patients like Liane say thank you by fundraising, and it shows our staff that their hard work is appreciated. A huge thank you to Liane and all her fellow fundraisers!
Participate and organize an NHS Big Tea Party
In July, join the nation and host an NHS Big Tea party to raise funds to support NHS staff, patients and volunteers when they need it most.
On Tuesday July 5, we invite you to raise a cup of tea to celebrate the 74th birthday of your amazing NHS.
Brew a cup of tea, spend time with family and laugh with friends or colleagues and take time to relax and unwind. We have an assortment of resources to help you organize your event, including banners, coasters, signs and posters as well as a fundraising game. Please contact us for a fundraising package on [email protected]
Funds raised will help fund improvements for Norfolk Community Health & Care NHS trust patients, and the staff who provide this vital service across the county.