Company director Paul Smith was moved to tears when he paid a visit to Bluebell Wood Children’s Hospice to hand over a donation made by his business MultiWebMarketing.
Following a charity skydive completed earlier this year by Paul and two of his fellow directors, a total of £2,160 was raised – and in a visit last week to hand over the donation it was an ideal opportunity to see the great work being done to support children with life-shortening conditions at the charity’s hospice in Sheffield.
“It’s actually so difficult to comprehend what charities like Bluebell Wood do when you read about it,” said Paul. “You really must see it to fully appreciate it and at that moment the transaction of the donation completely disappears and you see the real value of it.
“This isn’t about me at all but I’ve had a brush with cancer earlier in my life and so visiting the hospice naturally evoked a lot of negative memories for me to such a degree that I wasn’t sure I was actually going to go.
“I could feel my heart pumping as we were pulling up the drive and the whole experience was so touching.
Each year, Bluebell Wood Children’s Hospice supports more than 300 families across South Yorkshire as well as Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire and Lincolnshire providing care not only to the children but the whole family.
One of the charity’s regional fundraisers, Eleanor Hughes, said: “Having a brother or sister with complex medical needs can be very hard and funds raised by companies like MultiWebMarketing allow us to continue to reach out to siblings and support them with play sessions, days out or counselling with our family support team.
“Paul’s team raised an amazing amount of money for us and this gives us so much opportunity to continue offering the wraparound support that Bluebell Wood prides itself in; it means the world to all of us here.”
While Paul and his team had to go through the relative trauma of plunging 15,000 feet to safety from a plane, he has vowed it is not enough and more is to come.
““It quickly became apparent to me on our visit that what we had done to raise the money was so insignificant – and if anything we just hadn’t done enough to help,” said Paul. “These people desperately need more help from companies like ours. It was such an unbelievably moving experience because this is a place where families make memories to last a lifetime.
“It made us wish we could have done more – and as a business we certainly will be doing more in the future to show our support. If more companies can do their bit and pass on some financial goodwill, it will make a massive difference.”
The hospice costs £14,000 to operate every single day and only 15% of the annual costs are covered through statutory government funding.
Eleanor added: “This means that most of the £5.1 million we need to keep the hospice open every year is raised by fabulous fundraisers out in our communities and local businesses.
“The support of companies like MultiWebMarketing not only raises the vital funds we need to continue but, equally as important, creates awareness of our vital work across networks we couldn’t easily reach.”
The £2,160 that MultiWebMarketing raised could pay for 144 play sessions for siblings or 19 counselling sessions with trained counsellors for parents or siblings who are experiencing the most difficult times of their lives.