St Barnabas Hospice has announced a positive start to 2024. The Hospice’s annual Light up a Life appeal, Rudy’s Run initiative for local schools, and Tree-Cycle collection in local communities all brought in a staggering total of £106,305.
Light up a Life is St Barnabas’ biggest fundraiser of the calendar year, which sees thousands of people dedicating a light on the Tree of Life in memory of loved ones lost. These lights shone brightly on the 30-foot Christmas tree, located in front of Lincoln Cathedral throughout the festive period, with personalised messages of love also attached.
The Tree was illuminated during the Hospice’s Torchlight Procession on 22nd November. This year was the most attended ever throughout its 23-year run. Over 1,500 people of all ages came together to remember those no longer with us, walking with flaming torches and lanterns through historic uphill Lincoln, concluding at Lincoln Cathedral for a service of celebration and reflection.
An incredible 1409 people dedicated a light, with 988 torches and lanterns purchased for use during the Procession. Together, this campaign raised an incredible £60,070.
Ness Wilson, Events and Innovation Fundraising Officer and project lead for the Torchlight Procession, said:
“It is such a poignant event in the St Barnabas calendar and an incredibly moving evening. So many people join us, all with their memories of lost loved ones.
“It’s both a deeply personal event, as well as something people can share with others who have experienced grief. We are so grateful to everyone who dedicated a light or walked in our Procession, and we look forward to hosting the event again at the end of this year.”
Rudy’s Run is a festive fundraiser for the Hospice’s younger supporters. The initiative is an exciting, fun run that 51 schools, nurseries and community groups participated in throughout December.
Over 8000 children of primary school age were provided with activity books, antlers – just like Rudy, and even a visit from the famous reindeer himself, all before they ran, walked, skipped, danced or pranced to raise money for St Barnabas Hospice.
A total of £12,671 has been raised through the Rudy’s Run initiative thanks to the fundraising efforts of these young supporters, encouraging adults and fantastic teachers.
Deborah Yarwood, Fundraising Officer and Rudy’s Run project lead commented:
“We loved seeing the children have so much fun while also making a huge difference to people in their local community!
“Rudy loved visiting all the children and is now back at the North Pole, ready and waiting to see all the children again next Christmas. We want to thank every child and grown-up who took part and donated money; Rudy is very proud of you all!”
Once all the festive fun was over, the St Barnabas elves then took care of unwanted Christmas trees!
Tree-cycle returned in the early weeks of January, offering individuals and businesses a tree collection service right from their front door in return for a donation to the Hospice. Unpotted trees are chipped, which can then be turned into fuel for biomass boilers or mulch for gardens. Potted trees are replanted at the Lincolnshire Showground and given a new lease of life.
This sustainable campaign proved to be more popular than ever before, with the hospice’s elf volunteers collecting 1502 trees across Lincolnshire and raising a tree-mendous £33,564.
Caroline Swindin, Head of Fundraising and Lottery at St Barnabas, said:
“This year, we were able to visit even more locations around the county thanks to increased support from our volunteers. It really is a community effort, and we couldn’t have done it without our fantastic corporate supporters and local businesses who lend us their manpower, vans, chipping services and general assistance.
“A huge thank you to everyone who booked a tree collection or supported us during Tree-cycle. Please remember to book in your tree next year!”
St Barnabas extends its gratitude to every person and organisation who has supported the charity over the festive period.
The money raised helps the Hospice in its mission to provide compassionate, dignified care to over 12,000 adults living with a life-limiting or terminal illness each year across Lincolnshire.
St Barnabas needs to raise over £13 million yearly to cover vital hospice care costs. Each pound really does make a difference and is greatly appreciated.
To find out more about upcoming campaigns and ways to get involved, you can visit the St Barnabas Hospice website: https://stbarnabashospice.co.uk/.