Sun readers and X Factor fans are all helping raise money for seriously ill children this Christmas - and no one is more grateful for the support than Coldstream’s Gill Dickson.
The Sun on Sunday has partnered with children’s charity Together for Short Lives for its Santa Hospice Appeal and 50% of proceeds from the sale of this year’s X Factor winner’s single will also go to the charity that speaks out for children and young people who are expected to have short lives.
Gill is a workforce development manager for Together for Short Lives and she was part of the team taking telephone donations recently.
She explained: “I do a lot of my work away from the office so I was able to have the calls transferred and help out from home.
“It was great fun, with people ringing from all over the UK. I wonder if they would be surprised to know they were ringing through to me in Berwickshire!”
Gill’s role takes her all over the country helping provide the right care for the 49,000 children in the UK living with life-shortening conditions. She knows that the money raised for Christmas presents for children in seven hospices throughout the UK will help make precious memories for the children and their families.
“My focus is on children’s palliative care staff having the skills and knowledge they need to support children with life-shortening conditions. Having enough well trained health and social care workers is essential to ensure that children and families can access high quality, consistent care.
“I’ve been privileged to visit many of the UK’s children’s palliative care services, including Robin House at Balloch, part of Children’s Hospice Association Scotland. One of the best parts of my job is meeting families of children with serious illnesses and hearing how the palliative care nurses and other staff have supported them to get the care they need.”
Children’s Hospice Association Scotland is one of the children’s hospices set to benefit from the appeal. The charity needs £10 million every year to support children, young people and families across Scotland and the presents bought through this appeal will go to Rachel House which houses up to eight families.
Barbara Gelb, chief executive, said: “Christmas is a time for giving. Together for Short Lives is thrilled to partner with the Sun on Sunday so readers can have the chance to give some of the 49,000 children and young people with life-shortening conditions an extra special Christmas present this year.
“Many of the children we work with will have short lives, every moment is precious. We want to support them to have the best quality of care be it in a hospice or in the home. Working with the Sun on Sunday will make this Christmas even more special and help us reach more families that will benefit from our support.”