The work of a Lancaster hospice has been featured as part of the launch of The Big Walk – an Eden Project initiative delivered in partnership with the National Lottery.
The Big Walk got underway from the geographical heart of the UK – Morecambe, just a few miles from St John’s, and was highlighted on national TV during BBC One’s The One Show on May 16.
The Big Walk sees four walkers head in separate directions back to their respective homes in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. Each day they will visit community projects and charities en route and spend time with those people who go the extra mile to support and bring communities together.
At St John’s, Michael Conlon, who is walking back to his hometown of Belfast, met three sisters from Lancaster who have experienced the work of the hospice first hand.
Helen Holl, Karen Birchall, and Dawn Edmondson first got to know the Hospice back in 2002 when both Helen and Karen’s mothers-in-law received end of life care.
In 2011 and 2014 their own mother and then father sadly followed the same path as a result of cancer diagnoses. More recently, Dawn’s closest friend, Angie Aitken was under the care of St John’s before her sad passing last November.
Speaking about the work of St John’s, Karen said: “It’s the charity that is closest to our hearts. The staff are wonderful and it’s a marvellous place. It’s a big family affair for us. If I’m feeling a bit down, I’ll come here and just have a cuppa or go into the little chapel.”
Between them, the sisters and their extended family and friends have raised more than £10,000 for St John’s.