Christmas is just around the corner, and with so many of you choosing to don your festive knit for St Luke’s Festive Friday, we thought we’d trawl online for some of the best (and craziest) 2018 has to offer!

For gamers, geeks and nerds – check out these courtesy of techadvisor.co.uk

Fancy rocking a festive super hero – check out these courtesy of mirror.co.uk

Whether you’re part of a business, school or community group, Festive Friday fundraising is a great way to gather together, have fun and help support our care for over 300 patients during the Christmas period.

Whatever your event, big or small, every penny counts when it comes to the compassionate care we give at Christmas.

It’s not to late to register for your free fundraising pack!

Excitement is building about Elmer the Elephant and his friends trooping into Plymouth for Elmer’s Big Parade next summer, giving our city a mammoth boost that will benefit us all.

The enchanting trail across Plymouth will feature 40 bright and unique elephant sculptures each painted by a talented emerging or established artist. Brought about in partnership between St Luke’s, Andersen Press and Wild in Art, the Parade is set to attract over 200,000 visitors to the city and its surrounding areas – that’s more than the annual Firework Championships, making it Devon and Cornwall’s biggest mass-participation event for 2019.

On average, trails such as this draw an extra 30 per cent footfall to shops and visitor attractions, and it’s estimated that ours will boost Plymouth’s economy by £5 million. Not only that, the increased profile will help raise awareness of our city’s creative community and all manner of businesses big and small.

Here at St Luke’s, we’re speaking to companies about getting behind our charity and this amazing opportunity for our city by sponsoring one of our elephant sculptures, which will eventually be auctioned off in aid of us when the Parade closes. Recently, we were delighted to welcome accountants PKF Francis Clark on board, the firm having recognised the potential to make a difference to our patients and their families while also boosting Plymouth as a whole.

Duncan Leslie, Partner at PKF Francis Clark, said: “We are delighted to support Elmer’s Big Parade Plymouth in support of St Luke’s, who do such wonderful work caring for the families of the city affected by life-limiting illness. We look forward to tracking down our Elmer around the streets of Plymouth soon!”

The opportunity to be a sponsor is an exciting way to be involved in a major tourist attraction and be part of Plymouth’s portfolio of events for 2019. So, if there’s anyone in your networks who might welcome getting involved in this way, please help us spread the word.

Likewise, if you know an artist who’d like to get on board and use their talent to paint one of our lovely elephants, or you’re aware of a school or youth group who could benefit from being part of the trail’s education programme, we’d appreciate your help. Please put them in touch with Emma Milford, Project Manager for Elmer’s Big Parade 2019, on 01752 964429 or at emilford@stlukes-hospice.org.uk

An ‘amazing and ‘gentle’ midwife who passed away in March this year after a brave battle with cancer is being remembered by colleagues as they band together to raise money for St Luke’s.

Charlotte D’Alessio, who died the day after her 51st birthday, had worked at Derriford Hospital for almost two decades.

St Luke’s was there to provide care and support for Charlotte and her family, and her colleagues have already raised over £1,200 for our charity.

On 21 July they will come together to take part in our popular Neon Midnight Walk in memory of much-loved Charlotte.

Read more courtesy of Plymouth Live | http://ow.ly/MCK930koUHz

Sign up | www.stlukesmidnightwalk.co.uk

 

Our amazing volunteers are at the heart of St Luke’s and the services we provide. We appreciate them every day and this national Volunteers’ Week (1 – 7 June 2018), we want to say an extra big thank you to them all for the difference they make.

We spoke with volunteers across our community to gain more insight into the work they do, what motivates them and what they gain in return. As we’re sure you’ll agree, they’re a real inspiration!

Find out more about volunteering opportunities at St Luke’s.

When it came to choosing the right person to cut the ribbon at the opening of its new charity shop in Southway, St Luke’s Hospice Plymouth knew just the woman for the job!

Maxine Carter, who lives locally, bravely had her head shaved on her 55th birthday earlier this year, raising almost £5,000 for the charity that cared for her father-in-law at its specialist unit at Turnchapel following his cancer diagnosis.

Her head shave, which took place at the Falstaff Inn in Southway, was something Maxine had been planning for five years while she grew her hair long. Prior to performing the shave, hairdresser Jenny King divided Maxine’s hair into four plaits, each measuring 16 inches, so that they could benefit the Little Princess Trust , which provides real hair wigs free of charge to children who’ve lost their own hair due to illness.

Maxine’s endeavour was supported family and friends who sponsored her, and a raffle at the event further boosted her total.

Speaking about her reasons for supporting the charity, Maxine said: “St Luke’s is important to me because of the fantastic work they do. My mum passed away 37 years ago this August and as a family we had no support from anyone, just a district nurse to visit once a day for personal care. It was really tough.

“But when my father-in-law was diagnosed with cancer, it was St Luke’s who made such a difference. He received great care and as a family we felt well supported.

“I have been overwhelmed at how generously everyone has got behind my fundraising, and I felt very proud to be asked to cut the ribbon at the opening of the new shop.”

There’s no stopping Maxine, who is and taking her bravery to the next level and planning a skydive in aid of St Luke’s.

She said: “I always say to people, you never know what is around the corner and one day they might need the services of St Luke’s. It is a local charity and every penny counts. They need our support so they can carry on the fantastic care they give.”

People wanting to support Maxine can do so via her fundraising page at www.justgiving.com/Maxine-Carter1

When it comes to boosting your skills, making new friends and improving your health, there’s nothing quite like volunteering. Giving some of your spare time – whether it’s an hour or two once a week or several days a month – to help a good cause has been shown to do all of this and more while providing critical support to help charities like St Luke’s.

Our volunteers are absolutely vital to the operation of St Luke’s and we couldn’t do what we do without them. From students to retired people and from a wide variety of backgrounds, they generously give their time in a host of different roles across our organisaton.

While many are based in our shops, others give their time to help in the cafe at our specialist unit at Turnchapel, become befrienders to our patients or marshal at our key fundraising events, such as the Neon Midnight Walk and Tour de Moor. And there’s another way our fantastic volunteers pitch in – hunting for treasure at our Charity Shop Distribution Centre in Plympton!

It’s at the warehouse that each year thousands of donated items are given by people who choose to drop them off there rather than in our charity shops. Clothes, coins, crockery, books, records, toys, games, jewellery – the sheer variety of the items we receive is something to behold! And all of them need careful sorting, which is where our volunteers come in.

“We call these volunteers our treasure hunters,” said Mark Kendall, Logistics and Recycling Manager. “That’s because they’ve developed a good eye for spotting the interesting and unusual – and sometimes highly collectable – items that can help us raise that bit more money for St Luke’s.

“They work hard, sifting through bric-a-brac before it’s allocated according to which of our shops it suits best, and always keeping an eye out for something special – so it can be an exciting role and there’s often a real buzz.”

On Saturday 21 April, there’s an opportunity to find out more at the Open Day at the Distribution Centre. From 11am to 3pm and open to everyone, it’s a family-friendly event with activities for children and a barbecue, as well as guided tours and taster sessions giving insight into what it’s like to be a ‘treasure hunter’ for St Luke’s. Those who attend will also see the recycling side, which generates income for our charity too.

Mark said: “Without these volunteers, things would grind to a halt. It’s their generosity in giving their time and skills that makes all the difference. And as well as sometimes finding that ‘treasure’, many volunteers say that expanding their circle of friends and feeling part of something as important as St Luke’s and the care we provide gives them an amazing boost.”

Event information:
Volunteer Open Day
Saturday 21 April 2018
11am to 3pm
St Luke’s Charity Shop Distribution Centre, Plympton, PL7 4JN. Directions.

No booking required, just turn up on the day!

For more information call 01752 401172 and ask for volunteer services.