Looking back at 25 silver years of care

NAWN 1208184AM16Martin House Garden Party. Garden designer and TV peronality Diarmuid Gavin. Picture : Adrian Murray(1208184AM16)
NAWN 1208184AM16Martin House Garden Party. Garden designer and TV peronality Diarmuid Gavin. Picture : Adrian Murray(1208184AM16)

Moving into 2013 Martin House Children’s Hospice looks back at a highly successful year which marked its 25th anniversary.

And this week Director of Business and Support Services at the Clifford-based facility for children with life limiting illnesses gave her thanks for support from local residents and businesses.

Aase Somerscale told the Wetherby News: “I would like to take this opportunity to say thank you to everyone who has supported Martin House over the past 25 years.

“It is incredible to think that 25 years ago, in August 1987, we welcomed our first families into the newly built hospice.

“During these 25 years we have been able to provide specialist care and support for more than 1,700 children and their families from across Yorkshire and we hope to be able to do this for many years to come.

“Thank you for your help with the building of Martin House, the second children’s hospice in the UK and worldwide.

“Thank you for enabling us to grow and develop and for your help in our efforts to continue our commitment to the many children and families throughout Yorkshire who need our services.”

Aase added: “Throughout 2012 we arranged a number of celebratory events.

“These include a large number of fundraising events, a garden party for the children and families, and on Sunday October 7 we opened our doors to the public and visitors had the opportunity to look round our hospice.”

Looking forward she added that the hospice still needs to meet the changing needs of the families and keep up to date with fast developing technology.

It also needs to rise to the many challenges that managing complex conditions of the children and young people poses.

She added that to do this they had already seen a continuous development and expansion of our services.

“A significant part of this development was the building of our teenage unit, Whitby Lodge, ten years ago, enabling us to provide much needed care and support for young people with a life limiting condition in an age appropriate environment.

“At the same time we undertook a major refurbishment project of the parents’ bedrooms and other areas of the hospice to bring our facilities up to date.

“Other important developments include the establishment of a community team, the posts of a Consultant in Paediatric Palliative Medicine and a Clinical Psychologist which have enhanced our service considerably and placed Martin House high on the agenda for paediatric palliative care, both nationally and internationally.

“The most recent physical developments include our new reception and covered walkway between the main house and the teenage unit plus the re-design of our quiet garden.”

Martin House staff pride themselves on offering a caring reach, not just to the children, but also their family with support being offered long after the death of a child.

Aase added: “We have also expanded our support for siblings and further developed the support we offer to parents and grandparents.

“We look forward to the next 25 years and hope that you want to be part of our future.”

To donate to Martin House Children’s Hospice log on to www.martinhouse.org.uk