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  1. ITV Report

South West hospices appeal for help to cover lack of funding due to coronavirus

Shops are vital for raising funds for this work and all 51 have had to close.

They are there for us in times of crisis and now bosses of hospices across the South West are appealing to us not to forget them.

Covid-19 has forced them to close shops and cancel fundraising events.

St Peter's Hospice, which is based in Bristol, has shut 51 shops across the area.

Meanwhile, Hospiscare in Devon predicts the charity will lose a million pounds in the next three months due to the pandemic.

Hospiscare in Devon predicts the charity will lose a million pounds in the next three months due to the pandemic.

Staff at St Peter's Hospice know all about extreme pressure and helping people at the most difficult time of their lives.

But this is different even for them.

Staff are used to working in times of great anxiety with family members and patients, and great sadness as well.

What's different is now is that people are feeling very sad and anxious in the outside world as well.

So there is a double intensity of what they are dealing with. But they (our staff) are still out there and they are doing it every day.

They are absolutely amazing. Our workforce have really risen to this challenge and it is quite humbling to see.

– Jayne Clarke, Director of Income Generation at St Peter's Hospice
Staff at St Peter's Hospice know all about extreme pressure and helping people at the most difficult time of their lives. Credit: St Peter's Hospice

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All 15 beds are currently in use at St Peter's, although the majority of their work takes place in the community.

Their shops are vital for raising funds for this work and all 51 have had to close.

It is the same for Hospiscare in Devon who say the closure of their shops and the cancellation of fundraising events will cost them over one million pounds over the next three months.

I realise it is a difficult time at the moment for everyone but we really need to reach out to our community and ask for their support. There are other ways through virtual funding which we are looking into.

– Andrew Randall, CEO, Hospiscare

Bosses say they will do all they can to make certain these crucial services remain in place.

Volunteers could be asked to help remotely by keeping in contact with patients, or by dropping off supplies.

Meanwhile Dorothy House near Bath is asking for volunteer support during the emergency.

They already have a strong team of existing volunteers but this will allow their doctors and nurses to focus care where they are needed most.

Volunteers could be asked to help remotely by keeping in contact with patients, or by dropping off supplies.