WIGAN and Leigh Hospice’s flagship fund-raising campaign has already passed its first major milestone.
The Light for a Life Appeal, which sees thousands of people make dedications to loved ones or thank those who have made special contributions to their lives, has already had 1,000 contributions in the fortnight since it began, raising more than £10,000.
The hospice, based in Hindley, now hopes as many people as possible will join the appeal, and is determined to ensure no-one feels left out of the fund-raising campaign.
Anyone can be commemorated or thanked for their contributions to people’s lives through Light for a Life, which sees the thousands of memories and thankyous placed as lights on a giant Christmas tree in the hospice’s grounds and permanently inscribed in the Book of Dedications.
The hospice is seeking to correct the belief the appeal only remembers those who have died and assure people that those who would like to make a statement of thanks to someone still living are very welcome to do so. There is also no requirement for the people being commemorated to be a former or current hospice patient.
The hospice’s chief executive Dr Alan Baron said: “We have always felt Light for a Life to be a special and personal way to say thank you to people who are important to us.
“When we started Light for a Life in 1998, we decided to make it open to anyone who wanted to celebrate a life and for any reason. We are also finding that increasingly, people are making multiple dedications because it is a sincere, tangible personal and unique way to show that they care.”
There is no limit to the number of dedications any individual can make, with people choosing to mark birthdays, anniversaries, births, marriages or simply kind thoughts and deeds with the appeal.
Following the strong initial response from Wiganers the charity now hopes the appeal, which runs until the 12th night after Christmas, will raise another record-breaking amount to help the charity provide its specialist palliative care.
The appeal has steadily grown in size since its inception in 1998, with last year’s Light for a Life raising £51,000.
Fund-raiser Julie Dennis said: “More and more people are realising that dedications are not only to celebrate the lives of those we have lost. It is also lovely to be able to make dedications to people who are special to us today. Whether that is family, friends, colleagues or even new life; if your support continues at the same pace this year, we could be on target for another record number of dedications.”
Leaflets about Light for a Life can be picked up at any of the charity’s 12 shops around the borough, or by visiting www.wlh.org.uk