£1.6m still needed to complete start-of-the-art project
ONE of Northern Ireland’s most well-known local charities, Northern Ireland Hospice, is calling for urgent support to help fund the completion of the new Adult Hospice in Belfast.
Work began on the north-Belfast Somerton Road project in March 2014, at the cost of £13m and so far a total of £11.4m has been secured – but the hospice needs a further £1.6m to finish the project.
Support to date has come from the public sector, businesses, individuals, various trusts and the local community has been outstanding, enabling the project to rise from the ground.
However, with only six months until planned completion remaining, in order to complete the project within budget and within its time-frame, Northern Ireland Hospice needs a further £1.6m and is urgently calling for support from the public and private sectors and the local community.
NI Hospice embarked on the construction of this new state-of-the-art dementia-friendly Hospice as the old Hospice facility on the same site was no longer fit for purpose. During this construction period, Northern Ireland Hospice services have temporarily housed at Whiteabbey Hospital, and continue to provide care for people at the end of life, but the new facilities are badly needed.
Through this new building, NIH is making preparations that will enable them to provide end-of-life care for the ageing population in Northern Ireland, as well as those who have complex needs, including people suffering from non-malignant diseases such as dementia, heart disease, severe respiratory and neurological illnesses.
The new Northern Ireland Hospice project is now well underway, with basement works and brickwork nearing completion. Phase two of this ‘Building for Life’ anticipates the roofing of the new in-patient unit and the beginning of internal mechanical and engineering fit out works.
Heather Weir, Northern Ireland Hospice Chief Executive, said: “We could never have reached this stage of building the new hospice without the financial support from fundraisers. I would like pay tribute to all of our donors that have supported so far. Individuals and groups in the community, charitable trusts, corporate sponsors and government support has been instrumental is getting us this far.
“The race is now on to complete the new hospice for the people of Northern Ireland. On behalf of the people that need hospice care today and in the future, I am asking for all sections and sectors of our community to make a special effort and donate to help us get the hospice finished and the doors opened.”
Once completed, the new hospice will provide 18 modern single en-suite rooms, a Physiotherapy and Occupational Therapy facility, a Day Hospice, an Outpatient Clinic and an Education and Research centre which will support the advancement of hospice care in Northern Ireland.
The new hospice will also act as a hub for NI Hospice Community Nursing Services and will further incorporate relaxation gardens, children’s and relative’s play and relaxation area, a sanctuary and a Chaplain’s room.