The Irish Hospice Foundation (IHF) has announced today that the national Hospice Sunflower Days collection for local hospice services will take place on Friday, 6th June and Saturday, 7th June.
Next month, people will be able to support their local hospice service by purchasing various pieces of Sunflower merchandise including sunflower pins or sunflower seeds for €2 each from collectors on the streets of cities, towns and villages across Ireland.
Hospice Sunflower Days is a major source of income for hospices and voluntary hospice groups countrywide. The IHF coordinates the event on behalf of the hospice movement but all of the funds raised locally, stay locally.
Launching Hospice Sunflower Days, RTE’s Mary Kennedy commented: “Communities throughout Ireland have played a pivotal role in developing hospice services. This year the support is even more important considering the difficult environment charities are operating in. We hope the public will continue to give generously to this very worthy cause and remember a donation can go a long way to bringing comfort and dignity to people at the end-of-life.”
Pat Quinlan, Chief Executive Officer of Milford Care Centre and Chair of the Voluntary Hospices Group, commented: “Across the country, the number of people seeking hospice care services continues to increase and at a time when funding resources, both public and voluntary, have become more scarce. This year, we are more reliant than ever on the generosity and goodwill of our supporters and volunteers and we are most mindful of the fact that confidence in the charity sector in general is at an all-time low. Yet, we mustn’t lose sight of what Hospice Care stands for and we would appeal to people to support their local service to enable us to continue to help the most vulnerable members in our communities and most often at a time of greatest need. Sunflower Days is a vital source of funding for local hospice services so please donate on June 6th & 7th and if you have a few hours to spare please consider volunteering.”
The launch of Hospice Sunflower Days was also marked with the presentation of awards to “Sunflower Heroes.” In place for five years, the initiative honours the work of volunteers throughout the country, who work tirelessly on behalf of their local hospice service.
Hospice or palliative care involves the total care of patients and their families at the stage in a serious illness, where the focus has switched from treatment aimed at cure to ensuring quality of life. About 29,000 people die annually in Ireland and over 6,000 people use hospice services every year.
For more information and to volunteer with your local hospice service for Hospice Sunflower Days visit www.sunflowerdays.ie