Fundraisers making a difference to children’s lives at Woodford Green’s Haven House hospice

PUBLISHED: 08:00 11 August 2013 | UPDATED: 15:39 12 August 2013

Helen Jackson, a nurse at Haven House with a three-year-old patient, and barclays volunteer Cid Peterson-Selger

Helen Jackson, a nurse at Haven House with a three-year-old patient, and barclays volunteer Cid Peterson-Selger


It costs £3,835 every single day for youngsters and their families to be supported at Haven House hospice.

Jigna Joshi, Ian Hubbard, Carly Mills, Cid Peterson-Selger and Peter Stables, all from Barclays, cooking breakfastJigna Joshi, Ian Hubbard, Carly Mills, Cid Peterson-Selger and Peter Stables, all from Barclays, cooking breakfast

Now the hospice is launching a campaign locally for people to help boost its funds.

It is asking people to Pay For A Day of care through fundraising events, to help them carry on playing a vital role in the community after first opening 10 years ago.

All Saints Church, Inmans Row, Woodford Green and employees from Barclays corporate banking division have been among the first to pay for a day.

Mike Palfreman, chief executive of the hospice, said: “The idea emerged from other charities who had done something similar.

Rev Annie McTighe and Rev Paul Harcourt with one of the hospice's patients.Rev Annie McTighe and Rev Paul Harcourt with one of the hospice's patients.

“It gives people a chance to actually visualise where their money is going. With some huge charities that are more like businesses, you have no idea how your funds are being spent.

“But with Haven House you can come in and physically see where the money is going and see how the children and staff are benefiting.”

The hospice is also hoping to build a new annex offering consultation rooms so families can seek medical advice closer to home, as well as a music room and space to provide expert training for parents and staff.

Mike, who has been at the hospice for two-and-a-half years, said: “On an average day there are so many things that need paying for, varying from the cost of overnight nurses to updating toys that help children enjoy their time here. As well as taking toys out into the community for loan.

Jigna Joshi and Ian Hubbard, from Barclays, making breakfastJigna Joshi and Ian Hubbard, from Barclays, making breakfast

“We have the phenomenal support of around 200 volunteers, which no charity could do without. We have paid employees too as we need fully trained staff to work with children who need complex medical support.”

Mike added: “The reality is that we couldn’t survive without help from the local community and we have had help coming in since we launched this scheme.”

Barclays, who have raised enough money to pay for four days at the hospice, chose their first day to be last month and treated staff to a cooked breakfast. Volunteer Cid Peterson-Sekjer, 51, who has been co-ordinating the fundraising, said: “We have been supporting Haven House for two years, after our staff voted it as the charity they wanted to raise money for. We managed to pay for four days altogether which was brilliant.

“When you visit and see the work the people do here you feel so humbled. We decided to cook breakfast for everyone to say thank you for all the hard work they put in.

Pay for a Day

The Pay for a Day appeal, launched in January for Haven House’s 10th anniversary year, aims to get people to donate or fundraise to help meet the costs of one day’s care at the hospice.

Support of £3,835 would provide 24 hours of care for children with life-limiting conditions and their families.

People can pick particular days to honour someone’s memory or to celebrate a special day.

Director of nursing Christine Twomey said: “It’s a good idea to break it down into chunks and it helps the public understand how much it costs to provide care for children.

“There’s no excess here, there’s no fripperies, it’s very tightly managed.”

Donations account for two-thirds of the hospice’s funding.

If you want to know more, call 020 8506 3630 or email

“First time I came on a tour I was touched by the stories of those who use the hospice and by those who choose to help.”

The team raised more than £15,000 through various events including raffles, cake sales, skydives and quiz nights.

Cid said: “Everyone gets really competitive when we do the test the team nights.

“We’ve done so many things to raise money over the year including sweepstakes on the royal baby and electronic bingo.

“The hospice is extremely family-oriented and we are hoping to be able to pay for an entire week. We chose July 4 as our first day so we could visit The White House on Independence Day.

“I admire what the staff do here as I personally don’t think I could do it.”

Barclays volunteer Jigna Joshi, 30, added: “Volunteering at the hospice has been really rewarding.

“To bring people together and see the smile on their faces and act as an extra support for the staff, is great.”

All Saints Church paid for a day of care on July 8 after they held a special collection on Christmas Eve.

A spokesman for the church said: “We’ve supported Haven House from the beginning because we know what a difference the service makes to families who need that extra and special care – and because every child’s days should be full of life and love.”

Ricky Chalkley, 24, who has been volunteering at the hospice for the past year, said: “To know other people are as passionate about the hospice as the staff is fantastic and to get extra help is always great.

“You get so much out of working here and to know people want to donate gives you a boost.”

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