A CHARITY that cares for the terminally ill has launched an appeal to help fund the opening of a state-of-the-art hospice day centre in East Devon next year.
Hospiscare, which runs day centres in Exeter, Tiverton and Seaton Hospital, has launched the East Devon Day Hospice Appeal ahead of the opening of the hospice in Honiton.
The charity has purchased a site on King Street in the centre of town with building work due to start in January with a view to opening next summer.
The project has been made possible thanks to a £510,000 grant from NHS England and generous pledges from Hospiscare's sister charities and charitable trusts.
But the charity needs to raise a further £250,000 to complete the project and provide the running costs for two years.
Hospiscare is the only provider of in-patient care in Exeter, East and Mid Devon with Hospiscare teams caring for 700 patients in their homes at any one time.
The centre will be a "haven of care" for thousands of local people across the district.
The centre will replace the existing day care provision at Seaton Hospital and offer patients and their families and carers access to a multi-disciplinary medical, health and social care team in one location.
In addition to being set in beautifully-landscaped gardens patients will be given complementary therapies in spa-like treatment rooms.
Palliative care specialists will also be based at the centre for additional support, advice or treatment.
And there will also be educational facilities for the training of healthcare professionals and students.
The project is a result of a partnership with Budleigh District, Exmouth and Lympstone and Sidmouth Hospiscare.
Glynis Atherton, Hospiscare chief executive, said: "Rural isolation is a major issue in East Devon and we know that there is a demand for flexible, locally based hospice care. We are all committed to excellent end-of-life care for people in East Devon and this centre will make a massive difference to the quality of life for patients and their families.
"The residents of East Devon have always been generous to Hospiscare.
"The more money raised, the more services the hospice can offer."
Also collaborating on the project is interior designer, television presenter and East Devon resident Naomi Cleaver.
Naomi, who is best known for presenting various Channel 4 programmes including Other People's Houses and Grand Designs: Trade Secrets, will be consulting with the project manager and with nursing teams in Hopiscare's existing hospices to ensure that patients visiting the new day hospice receive the maximum therapeutic benefit.
"Environment is fundamental to wellbeing and the issues at hand go to the heart of what my design philosophy is about," said Naomi. "It's well known that colour can influence our experience of a space, but it's also about sound and smell, light and shade, artificial light and natural light, privacy and connectedness, and finding the right balance.
"I'm delighted to be able to apply all the study that I've developed over the years in helping to make the East Devon Day Hospice the best of its kind."
For information about launch events including in Honiton on Saturday, October 12, and Axminster on Thursday, October 17, visit www.hospiscare .co.uk or contact Sarah Smith on 01392 688063 or email firstname.lastname@example.org