Sunflowers in full bloom for hospice remembrance event

Sunflower memories event

Hundreds attended Pilgrims Hospices summer remembrance events last weekend to share and celebrate cherished memories of loved ones.

Pilgrims Hospices was visited by around 800 people for their annual Sunflower Memory days to see beautiful sunflower plaque displays at the charity’s Thanet,Canterbury and Ashford sites. Despite a slightly damp weekend, there was still a lovely atmosphere at each event with the opportunity for friends and family to remember and celebrate their loved ones lives.

This sixth annual Sunflower appeal was met with enthusiasm and spirits were boosted at Thanet and Ashford with the addition of a pop-up Prosecco stall! Visitors shared favourite memories with the Pilgrims team in the Therapy Centres, while enjoying cool drinks, tea and sunflower-themed cakes. So far the event has raised an incredible £35,000, thanks to the amazing generosity of Pilgrims’ supporters. This amount will support 100’s of people living with terminal illness in east Kent, and with donations continuing to come in the hospices will be able to reach many more.

Sara Scriven, Pilgrims Hospices Individual Giving Manager, said: “These sunflower days provide a lovely atmosphere for quiet reflection, but also allowing our supporters to share in stories of their loved ones with those who have been through similar experiences. As well as the sunflower marker displays, we also decorated the Therapy Centres and our gardens with beautiful sunflower seedlings. They were grown by Pilgrims volunteers, and the Fifth Trust, another east Kent charity that provides work experiences opportunities for adults with learning difficulties.”

All three events were delivered with the kind help of Pilgrims volunteers at the refreshments, merchandise and sunflower plant stalls. They also helped welcome visitors to find their sunflower markers and put their cherished memories and photos on our Memory Walls.

This year’s summer appeal was themed around the wonderful work the wellbeing practitioners at each hospice do. Pilgrims aim is to support as many people as possible, both out in the community and at the in-patient units, and the Therapy Centres are very much part of this.

Sara added: “We are seeing this appeal grow, year on year. We would like to thank all those who have made our remembrance days so very special. The amount raised for hospice care is just stunning, and will allow us to provide the best possible support to families who need us. Every £30 could pay for nursing care either on our wards, or in a patient’s own home, so the funds raised at events like these are vital to the work Pilgrims Hospices does.”

The sunflower marker displays will remain in the grounds at each hospice site in Ashford, Canterbury and Thanet for the next week for visitors to view them.

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