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27 years of service

Autumn/Winter 2018

Our latest news for supporters and friends of North Devon Hospice


Pauline receives prestigious award


Celebrating 20 years Two decades of our lottery


Supportive Care


How the hospice changed Colin's life

Gozo the dog brings joy to the hospice “His job in life is to make people smile,” said owner Paul Jewels of his faithful therapy dog, Gozo. And by bringing him to meet patients and families at North Devon Hospice each week, Gozo is doing that job incredibly well. While many shy away from thinking about what our final days, weeks or months may be like, hospices help people live life to the full and support the emotional well-being of every individual, which is exactly why Gozo the dog makes his regular visits to the hospice. “After I suffered a stroke my grandchildren thought it would be a really good idea for me to have a puppy. They said it would be therapeutic,” Paul tells us.

It turned out that Gozo was so therapeutic for Paul, that he decided to investigate training him up as an official therapy dog. This happened in conjunction with the charity Pets as Therapy, and the pair now visit North Devon Hospice every week to spread joy and smiles among patients and families on the Bedded Unit. “We had an invitation to come to North Devon Hospice and that has been so exciting,” said Paul. “He loves coming here and when he first walks in you can see his excitement Continued on page 3

Welcome to the Autumn/Winter 2018 Edition of our Newsletter.What a year we have had at the Hospice, the dedication from our supporters means our care services have been able to continue providing round-the-clock care to our patients and their families when they need us the most. Enjoy looking back on our recent work, we look forward to sharing more with you in the future.

On behalf of every single person we care for, thank you! CEO Stephen Roberts

Supported by The Long House Janet says hospice is a life saver


A gift in your will

Support our future with a lasting legacy 5

Volunteer receives award

Pauline is honoured for 27 years service 6

New goods selling fast

Two Rivers: get your 'A grade' goods


Celebrating 20 years

Two decades of our hospice lottery


Mission: Unbreakable

Sign up for this year's event now


Marvellous support for Colin Colin makes invaluable friends 2


North Devon Hospice’s rapid referrals gain national recognition North Devon Hospice has worked to reduce referral times, so patients are seen as quickly as possible. It’s been such a success that the charity was nominated for a National Patient Safety Award. Described as ‘The Oscars’ of the healthcare world, it is a real demonstration of how North Devon Hospice is leading the way nationally when it comes to outstanding care. Patients are referred to North Devon Hospice by their GP, or another healthcare professional, when they are diagnosed with a life-limiting illness. The first point of contact at the hospice is often the Clinical Nurse Specialist (CNS) team, who assess new referrals and visit patients in their own homes, providing a range of expertise and support. We have managed to reduce referral time so patients are seen as soon as possible. CNS Team Leader, Naomi Mohabeer, said that the 28% improvement came about by making lots of little changes. “We looked at

the way referrals came in from healthcare professionals, and looked at how we can streamline things to allow us to see patients as quickly as possible. Our aim is to contact patients within 24 hours, and that speed makes a real difference to those with a life-limiting illness.” For more information about how to access the care and support offered by North Devon Hospice, either speak to your GP or visit

Continued from front page

to see all the staff. The welcome he gets from everybody, including the nurses, is incredible. A therapy puppy is beneficial not just to the patients, but to the families too. It’s a distraction from the situation they are in. It helps them to smile, and to take their mind off things. To have Gozo either sitting in their lap or on their bed is wonderful. They find it very calming.” Myra, a patient on the hospice’s Bedded Unit, is one of many to enjoy a visit from Gozo. “He’s just beautiful, and a very good boy. I’ve had large dogs all my life, but he’s just the right size to come in and sit on people’s laps. He’s as good as gold, and he brings a lot of joy.” It’s not just patients and families who love Gozo though, he’s just as popular with the hospice nurses! “We absolutely love Gozo! He is such a sweetheart, and I’ve told Paul that I will puppy sit for him at the drop of a hat!” said Catherine Hobson, Deputy Team Leader on the Bedded Unit. “It’s so important to give our patients experiences like this, because our job is to help create memories and special moments. That happens every time Gozo and Paul come to visit, and we are very grateful to them both.”

Are you a young charity leader of the future? Do you believe in the power and potential of young people to lead change? If so, then joining the Board of North Devon Hospice may be for you. The Board of Trustees is the governing body for the organisation, overseeing the vision, strategy and resources. Trustees serve on a voluntary basis, meeting four times a year, with additional meetings as appropriate. We are looking for a Young Trustee to join our Board. We are seeking a team player who is able to bring a youthful perspective and help us reach and engage with the younger generation. This role will give you the opportunity to develop your leadership and negotiation skills, increase your networking opportunities and inform and influence decision making within the hospice. Previous experience is not a requirement since mentoring and support will be provided, and all reasonable expenses will be reimbursed. To apply or for more information call Sue Friend on 01271 347226 or email

Janet says Long House is 'a life saver' Having only lived in the area for a couple of years, Janet Curl said that attending North Devon Hospice’s outreach centre in Holsworthy has really helped her feel part of a “community.” “I’ve met so many lovely people and we really are a proper little community, because we’re all going through the same thing, albeit at different stages of the journey. We can say anything to each other, because it is a safe space,” she said. Janet has been living with Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma for several years, and had moved from Sussex to Holsworthy six years ago to be closer to her son. Since North Devon Hospice built The Long House in Holsworthy, to provide care closer to home for the surrounding community, Janet has attended regular sessions that support her through her journey. 4

“The Long House is a beautiful space. As soon as you walk in you feel at peace and very relaxed. It’s a sanctuary." “People have an idea about what hospices are like. They think about people in their last days and that it might be very sombre, but it’s nothing like that,” she said. “This place is full of life and laughter. The hospice helps us live life to the full. We have a lot of giggles here, which is what the hospice is all about.” Mandy Bateman is North Devon Hospice’s Complementary Therapy Team Leader and runs the pamper sessions at The Long House. She says that hospice care is all about treating people as individuals and

looking after the whole person, not just their symptoms. “When someone is faced with a life-limiting illness, their emotional and physical well-being are intrinsically linked,” she said. “So it’s important to provide as much support as possible to help patients live well with their illness. The pamper days are a great example, because you can see a change in people from the beginning of the day to the end. They are so much more relaxed, and you just know this will make a difference to their overall well-being. It is not what people initially imagine when they think about hospice care, but this is what modern hospice care looks like.”

Forever Stone keeps our loved one's memories alive Our Forever Stone was officially unveiled on 31st May at an evening event to mark a momentous occasion for the hospice. The Forever Stone in our gardens symbolises the importance of gifts in wills to our care. Every year gifts in wills make up a third of our care costs and we rely on the generous people of North Devon remembering us when making or updating their wills, people such as Lyn Cole. Here her daughter Amy tells us of her mother’s legacy. “Four days before she died, Mum painstakingly dictated a letter to me. She never forgot her duties as a mother, and as a human being. So grateful for the care and attention she had received at the hospice, she was adamant to give something back." Amy told us, “I couldn’t be happier that my dear mum chose to support the hospice

in the way that she did. I relished those few, precious days at the hospice and will treasure them for the rest of my life. It was an opportunity for me to have a laugh with Mum. Money simply can’t buy that joy, but it can help fund the care that will help other families come away with good memories too. It might not seem like it when they’re in the thick of it and losing the one they love. But if they look closely, they will find those special moments, like I did. It might just be a smile, a wave or a grip of a hand. I feel so proud of her because I know how much it meant for her to leave a gift and how she could never really put a price on the help she was given."

To speak to us about leaving a gift in your will or about the Forever Stone please email or call us on 01271 344248.

The Big Raffle Be in with a chance of winning £5,000 in cash, a spa day package for two at Saunton Sands Hotel or a £250 Next voucher Drawn Saturday 2nd February 2019, outside Banbury's, Barnstaple. Kindly sponsored by


Pauline from Holsworthy Shop receives national honour A North Devon Hospice volunteer has been invested in the Order of The League of Mercy in a prestigious ceremony at London’s Mansion House in July. Pauline Wonnacott, who is volunteer manager of the charity’s Holsworthy shop, was bestowed with the honour after 27 years of service to the hospice. Lord Lingfield, President of the League of Mercy, presented Pauline with her medal, an experience she said to be ‘very surreal’. “I can’t believe that I’ve got an award for doing something I’ve loved for 27 years,” she said, having received an honour bestowed upon just 27 people this year for extraordinary voluntary service. She still insists that she has got as much out of volunteering as she has given back. 6

“It works both ways, because being here has helped me a lot and I’ve made a lot of friends over the years,” she said. “But I am very proud of the money that we raise as a team through the hospice shop here in Holsworthy.” Sam Husband, Director of Finance at the hospice, accompanied Pauline to the ceremony at the Lord Mayor of London’s residence. She said it was a proud moment for everyone involved in the charity.“It was a

privilege to put Pauline’s name forward for this award and she thoroughly deserves to be recognised for her years of dedication. The hospice simply couldn’t operate without our army of volunteers, so this is nice to see one of our longest serving supporters honoured in this way.” Volunteers are involved in all aspects of hospice life. Find out how you could get involved by visiting

Thank you to our Volunteers

care and support to the people of North Devon. It’s their skills, passion and constant dedication that makes our hospice so special. We spoke to Stella Burnard who has volunteered for us for 22 years as a driver, helping patients access the care and support on offer from the hospice. She tells us “I love the relationship that builds with patients when you get to spend time with them, you really get to know them and form a strong bond which is so important.”

This September we have celebrated our amazing volunteers with a series of Thank You events held at Deer Park in Barnstaple and The Long House in Holsworthy, to show them just how much they mean to us. Our volunteers enjoyed a delicious afternoon tea, a thank you speech from our CEO Stephen Roberts plus a little thank you gift to enjoy. Volunteers are at the heart of what we do here at the hospice, almost 550 people give their time to help us provide

Roles available within the charity are so varied, from chef to administration, gardener to maintenance crew for events; we are always looking for new volunteers to join our team. If you or someone you know would be interested in one of our many roles available then get in touch with or call 01271 344248 and ask for the Volunteering Office.

Thank you: We would not be able to provide the care we do without the incredible dedication and generosity of almost 550 volunteers.

White Goods at Two Rivers selling fast We are delighted to be selling brand new white goods at our Furniture and Homeware Store, on Two Rivers Industrial Estate, Braunton Road, Barnstaple. You can pick up a new washing machine, dishwasher, tumble dryer, fridge or freezer and best of all our prices are at least 35% off the RRP that you would pay in the bigger stores. This is because the models we stock are what's known as 'A' Grade, which mean that they have tiny cosmetic flaws. Often these are undetectable to the naked eye, but it means the larger stockists won’t sell them on their shop floor. However, their loss is our gain! Because we are delighted to stock these items and offer them to the North Devon public at a hugely reduced rate. All products are perfectly mechanically functioning, all have been tested and all come with a 6-month guarantee. So, come and see us on Braunton Road, Barnstaple and pick up a bargain! We are open 6 days a week, 9am-4.30pm. 7

Celebrating two decades

This August saw the 20th anniversary of our Lottery. To celebrate we held a small event for our first ever lottery members, volunteers and previous Lottery Managers Brian Price, who set up the initiative in 1998, and Mike Penny, Brian’s successor. Richard Carter, our current Lottery Manager, said “It’s such an honour to be surrounded by long-standing supporters who have dedicated so much to the cause over the years. We urge anyone out there who isn’t already a member to join us. It costs just £1 a week to enter and can be set up online or on a form available from the hospice.You could be in with a chance of winning £1,000 each week while supporting a really worthwhile local cause.” If you would like to know more about joining the lottery, call 01271 347217 or visit 8

Unique donation yields almost £2,000 on eBay Our Joy Street shop recently received a very unique donation of several large, handmade cloth bags. At first glance we weren't sure what they contained but after a little investigation we learned that they were, in fact, lace-making kits - including stunning hand-painted bobbins known as 'spangles'. Some of the kits even included pieces of intricate half-finished lace work seen in the pictures featured. Sally Donnellan from Online Trading says: “We were both excited and intrigued when we received these. Researching unusual items is one of my favourite parts of the job and it was fascinating learning how this beautiful lace was made.” After adding the kits to the hospice eBay shop we were astounded by how quickly they were snapped up. Within a week the kits had completely sold out, some heading

off to destinations as far afield as Italy and Australia. This donation raised an incredible £1,963 which will help us continue our vital care. For an ever-changing selection of unique items and fantastic bargains visit our eBay shop, just search NorthDevonHospiceShop (no spaces) on

Hundreds take on our toughest 10k. Sunday 14th October, North Molton Sports Centre Mission:Unbreakable is back for 2018. This is our commando-style course filled with 34 real challenges to put you through your paces. Teams will be tested by mud, fire, water, ice and a range of assault course obstacles in order to call themselves an 'Unbreakable'.

Our aim this year is simple: to raise £80,000 to support our Night Nurses who provide vital care to patients and their families when they need us the most. This event redefines the traditional 'mud run' obstacle course by adding in a large measure of military action. That's because the course has been designed, once again, with the help of 24 Commando Royal Engineers, based at RMB Chivenor. They will be on hand to lead our teams through a Commando warm-up, whilst also providing plenty of encouragement around the course and finally presenting them with their medals of honour at the finish line…should they complete the mission!

Our Clinical Nurse Specialists and Hospice to Home nurses travelled over 60,500 miles last year to support our patients who needed care at home. Could you go 10k for us? If this course sounds like something you and your friends could tackle then you can still register until 30th September – you could also sign up on the day but we are unable to guarantee there will still be spaces available. To avoid disappointment sign up online today at HEADLINE SPONSOR


The Long House helps Colin Colin was diagnosed with secondary bone cancer in June last year. Far from seeing this as a life sentence, it has proved to be an opportunity for him to make friends and come out of his shell, thanks to the support of North Devon Hospice. He now accesses a range of support close to home at The Long House, the hospice’s purpose-built outreach centre in Holsworthy, which Colin says he enjoys immensely. “The camaraderie here is fantastic, everybody seems like a big family,” said Colin, after receiving a relaxing massage from one of the hospice’s complementary therapists. “I’m a very private man and keep myself to myself, but this place has made me more relaxed and brought me out of my shell. I’ve made friends here without a doubt, and we can help each other out and talk about our illnesses. People here are in the same 10

boat, so they know what you’re talking about, they know about your medication and how tired you may be feeling.” As well as making friends among other people who are in the same situation, Colin also accesses a range of support at The Long House including massage, mindfulness sessions and a workshop called Tracks of My Years. “We did a course looking at music which is meaningful to us, which our family could listen to and think ‘that’s Dad.’ I made a CD with 12 songs that relate to my family and found that was a really great experience.” said Colin. “I didn’t have any idea of what it meant to come to a hospice. I thought it was a place for those who are going to die. But it’s not like that at all. The staff and the patients all feel like one big happy family.” Far from finding a grim or drab atmosphere at The Long House, Colin instead discovered somewhere warm and uplifting. “I was surprised by how upbeat this place is. When you say the word ‘hospice’ people might think of somewhere you go to die, but there are

people here who are going to live years and enjoy the benefits of hospice support all that time.” Colin added, “It’s a very lively place and the staff and volunteers make you feel at home. Everyone has a laugh and you can laugh about yourself as well. Rather than just being miserable about the illness that you’ve got you can laugh about it, which is amazing.”

Celebrate the memory of a loved one this Christmas

Kindly sponsored by

Each year in December we host several services around North Devon for families, friends and colleagues to honour the memory of someone close to them. Christmas is a special and poignant time to remember loved ones who are no longer with us. Our services offer comfort and a sense of peace at what could be a difficult time. We will be by your side remembering someone special to you by including your loved one's name in our special Light Up a Life book of remembrance and we will hang a star on our Christmas Tree at Deer Park with your own words included. You will also get a star for your own tree at home and a special dedication card with your loved one's name on it. The person you are remembering with your dedication doesn’t have to have been cared for by the hospice. We ask for a small donation which will help us to continue providing care to our patients and their loved ones facing a life-limiting illness. If you would like to get in touch or find out more information please call us on 01271 344248 or visit

Light Up a Life Services Sun 2nd Dec, 6.30pm St Philip and St James, Ilfracombe Sun 2nd Dec, 10.30am St Mary’s, Appledore Thurs 6th Dec, 6.00pm St Sabinus, Lee Fri 7th Dec, 7.00pm Grosvenor Church, Barnstaple Sun 9th Dec, 6.30pm Methodist Church, Fremington Weds 12th Dec, 7.00pm Parish Church, Woolsery Weds 12th Dec, 7.00pm Methodist Church, South Molton Sat 15th Dec, 6.00pm Pannier Market, Bideford Sat 15th Dec, 6.00pm St Mary Magdalene, Chulmleigh Sat 15th Dec, 6.00pm Christ Church, Braunton Sat 15th Dec, 6.00pm Marwood (location tbc, please check our website) Sun 16th Dec, 7.00pm Methodist Church, Torrington 11

Dates for your diary

Exmoor Ramble

30 SEP

Join renowned local Exmoor enthusiast Ivan Huxtable for another of his beautiful and scenic 10 mile circular sponsored walks. For more info go to

Stars in their Eyes

30 NOV

Can you impersonate a famous singer, comedian, actor, performer? Free to Enter.

Bideford Conserative Club

Santa Fun Run



Festive fun on the beach! See our website, or call the fundraising team to sign up.

Woolacombe Beach

22 NOV

Christmas Fayre

Get into the Christmas spirit and find unique gifts at the Durrant House Hotel.

Durrant House Hotel, Northam

Light Up a Life


Celebrate the memory of a loved one this Christmas. Check our website for dates of Light Up A Life services throughout December or page 11 of this newsletter

Mission Unbreakable

14 OCT

Join us for our greatest challenge - 10k of mud, marsh, rivers and gruesome obstacles! Be a hero for us and sign up today! North Molton Sports Club


Woolhanger NOV Manor Christmas Fayre Mulled wine, craft stalls, entertainment & festivities at the beautiful Manor. Woolhanger Manor, Parracombe

Pitch in a Pound

15 FEB

We’re inviting local workplaces, schools and groups across North Devon to ‘Pitch in a Pound’ for the hospice. Get in touch for more info. Various places in North Devon

Holsworthy Coffee Morning

24 OCT

Coffee morning in aid of The Long House Outreach Centre. All welcome.

Holsworthy Memorial Hall, Holsworthy, North Devon

Christmas Concert


Hallsannery House opens its doors for another festive concert. Keep an eye out for more details coming soon.


Black Tie Ball


1920’s themed Ball at Royal North Devon Golf Club. Tickets £35.00 includes three course meal.

For more info go to

Christmas Wreath Making



Croyde Support Group welcome you to make your table displays & Christmas wreaths.

Hallsannery House, Bideford, North Devon

Manor House Inn, Croyde

Would you like to volunteer at our fundraising events?

Would you like to support us by joining a Friends Group?

If you’d like to be part of the fantastic team that make our events a success, please give us a call on 01271 347204. We have a variety of roles available.

Make new friends and have fun whilst helping the hospice to provide care and support for all the family. Please give us a call on 01271 347204.

To view our full calendar of events visit To speak to our Fundraising Team call 01271 347232. North Devon Hospice, Deer Park, Barnstaple, EX32 0HU. Tel: 01271 344248 Email:

Registered charity number 286554

North Devon Hospice's Autumn/Winter 2018 newsletter  

The latest news and views from the hospice - how your support helps us make a difference to the lives of local people

North Devon Hospice's Autumn/Winter 2018 newsletter  

The latest news and views from the hospice - how your support helps us make a difference to the lives of local people