25-year-old pharmacy student Alice, her family and friends have raised almost £17,500 for St Luke’s since 2016. Alice’s Mum Lynne was cared for at the hospice three years ago. Through the tribute site set up in Lynne’s memory her loved ones continue to fundraise for St Luke’s. Alice explains:
“I lost my mum when I was 22. You hear about people losing someone close to them, but you never think it will happen to you. I was so close to my Mum and felt like I could tell her anything. Anyone who knew my Mum loved her and I never heard anyone have a bad thing to say about her. It makes me feel so lucky to have had a Mum who cared so much, not only for her family, but for everyone around her.
“After we lost Mum it was my friends that suggested we should start fundraising for St Luke’s. I was hesitant at first but once we started planning things, I really enjoyed it. It kept me busy and gave me something to focus on.
“Our first event was a charity football day. I’d never organised anything like that before, so I wanted to make sure everything was right. I couldn’t have done it without my sister Emma, my boyfriend and my friends. St Luke’s fundraising team were always there to help when I needed it. Anything I asked, whether it was about raffle tickets, music licensing or insurance, was always sorted out quickly. Thankfully the sun shone, and we raised more than £2800, which was match funded by Halifax, taking the total up to £5700.
“We did the same again the next year and, despite heavy rain all day, we raised more than £4300. We’ve also taken part in two Night Strider events, organised cake sales, fundraised at work and my friend Molly ran the Sheffield half marathon. Whatever you do for St Luke’s you always feel appreciated by the fundraising team.
“The tribute site is a great way to keep all the memories of Mum and our fundraising achievements in one place. It’s so nice to see the comments and photos that people upload. It’s also somewhere for me and Emma to write down our thoughts and feelings about Mum when we feel we need to.
“It’s really important to me to fundraise to help St Luke’s deliver the same amazing service to other families as they did to mine. Losing your mum is always hard, but it was good to know her last weeks were spent at St Luke's; they couldn't do enough for her and made her as comfortable as possible. The rooms were brilliant, giving Mum the privacy she needed, and all the staff were amazing, from the doctors and nurses to the catering and cleaning teams. Everyone was so friendly towards us and that helped so much.
“The care my Mum got from the healthcare team really was amazing, allowing her to keep her dignity in the worst of times. There are so many examples of St Luke’s staff going above and beyond for Mum. Just little things like painting her nails or going out to buy Birdseye fish fingers especially for her when she fancied them. I just can’t thank the staff enough for everything they did for her. They also cared for me and my family, answering any questions we had openly and honestly. There is so much support available even after you’ve lost someone and I know I can turn to that when the time is right for me.”