CHOOSING St Mary’s Hospice as one of the beneficiaries of Jo’s Appeal was a no-brainer.
The Hospice at Home team did a fantastic job in caring for my wife in the final weeks before her death from ovarian cancer in August 2015, aged 38.
It was humbling to see Solveig and her colleagues at work, carrying out a difficult and emotionally-draining job with such care and professionalism. Their daily visits brightened up the darkest hours of our lives, and their bond with Jo grew so strong in such a short space of time.
It takes a very special person to be a hospice nurse, doing this type of job dealing with illness and death day-in, day-out. It must be heart-wrenching for them at times.
So, when we set up the Jo’s Appeal feeder charity shortly after Jo’s death, it was an easy decision to make St Mary’s Hospice one of our chosen good causes, alongside the FGH oncology unit and The Eve Appeal.
The Hospice has played a very important role in many people’s lives over the past three decades and it is absolutely vital that this great local establishment goes on providing care and support to patients and their families for many more years to come.
Jo was a very special person who got on with everyone she met, and she never let her illness get her down.
Thanks to the wonders of our NHS doctors and nurses she lived a normal life for five-and-a-half years, in the wake of what was a pretty bleak diagnosis.
When sadly the cancer returned and it got to the point that there was nothing else the medical experts could do, the brilliant Hospice team took over. They eased Jo’s pain, brought a smile to her face, comforted her loved ones – and for that we are eternally grateful.
So far we have donated £17,500 to the Hospice. It’s not a big amount in the grand scheme of things, but the Hospice relies upon financial donations to survive, and like lots of other fund-raisers, we’ll continue to do our bit. It is the least we can do.
Meg: Jo and Matt’s dog proudly wearing Matt’s events medals.
Jo’s brother Sam with Matt
Matt presenting a fundraising cheque with St Mary’s Clare Tonkin (on the left) and Jo’s mum Norma Halpin