This year Wiltshire’s Gazette & Herald newspaper is celebrating its 200th anniversary and to mark the occasion has launched the 200 Appeal in support of Julia’s House in Wiltshire. Together with their readers and the local community, the Gazette & Herald team are aiming to raise £100,000 to help provide life-changing support to Julia’s House families in the county. If this target is reached it will fund the cost of all our current Julia’s House Wiltshire carers for the whole of 2016 – a fantastic achievement.
When a seriously ill child requires round-the-clock care, no family should have to struggle alone. Julia’s House exists to give much-needed support to these children and their families. Carers play a crucial role in our work, providing expert care along with stimulating play, fun and companionship for the child, providing frequent respite to exhausted families. Working closely with our nurses, they form strong bonds with the family, giving parents the confidence to leave their poorly child knowing they are in safe hands. How we are helping Wiltshire families: read Sophia's story
One of the Wiltshire parents currently supported by Julia’s House is Rebecca Thursby whose daughter two-year-old Sophia receives care at their family home. Two-year-old Sophia is blind and has severe epilepsy. She can lose consciousness many times a day and need resuscitating. She said: “We used to be a family coping largely on our own with a severely disabled child with a life-threatening condition. The stress of coping with our daughter’s care was taking its toll on our family. Julia’s House changed our lives significantly for the better. Julia’s House has provided our family with a lifeline.”
Gazette editor Gary Lawrence said: “This year the Gazette & Herald celebrates 200 years of bringing news, information and entertainment to the people of Wiltshire. We wanted to mark this landmark by helping to put something back into the community that has allowed this great newspaper to flourish for two centuries. “Julia’s House seemed to us to be a perfect appeal because it is fulfilling a vital role in the community and it will change peoples’ lives for the better. We have been so impressed with the staff and the testimonies from the families who are already being helped by the hospice and its fantastic team. “We know our readers and all of the hospice’s supporters get behind our appeal because this wonderful charity will give so much to the community.” Anything donated over and above the cost of the Carers will go towards helping Julia’s House establish its unique frequent respite care service for life-limited children and their families in Wiltshire.
Julia’s House CEO Martin Edwards said he was delighted that the Gazette & Herald had chosen Julia’s House as its charity during such a special year: “It means so much to us that the Gazette and Herald are backing Julia’s House in this way. We have big plans to provide a lot of expert and compassionate care for Wiltshire’s very seriously ill children. We can only do this with a high profile and the generosity of the public so I’m extremely grateful for this breakthrough support.”