Eden Valley Hospice and Jigsaw, Cumbria’s Children’s Hospice is inviting families across Cumbria to remember a loved one this summer with the return of their annual ‘Garden of Memories’ appeal.
The appeal gives people the chance to make a real difference to the families who receive the charity’s dedicated and compassionate care.
‘Garden of Memories’ also provides the community with the opportunity to remember someone special by making a donation and having the options of having a wildflower sown, a chosen memorial word or a personalised message engraved on a wooden plaque and displayed in the hospice gardens throughout August.
As well as being a vital fundraising initiative for the charity, Garden of Memories is an opportunity for people to come to the hospice, relax and surround themselves with memories they hold dear by attending a special service on Tuesday, August 8 2023 at 6.30pm. There will also be an opportunity to attend Eden Valley Hospice’s gardens at Bitts Park on Sunday August 6th 2023 at 5pm.
This year’s Garden of Memories appeal centres around the story of Cynthia Sherdley, a volunteer gardener at the hospice. Cynthia’s husband Carl died at the hospice in 2012 following his diagnosis with skin cancer, and later brain cancer.
Cynthia said: “I know only too well how important your local hospice’s gardens are – not only because I’m one of the small, but dedicated, team of volunteers who look after the grounds – but also because they were such a special place for my husband Carl and I while he was being cared for.
“Carl’s room backed onto the walled garden, a quiet and peaceful area which we spent so much time in. He often wasn’t well enough to go any further, so it was lovely to have this green space full of new life so close by. The experience we had left such an impression on me that ever since, I’ve been volunteering to help maintain the gardens so others can enjoy them like we did.
“Every time I go into the walled garden I think of Carl. It reminds of me of his bravery and how I never heard him complain once despite his illness, but the colours of the flowers also remind of his love for life, his love for rock music and leather jackets and his passion for visiting new places across the world, something we shared together.”
The hospice, which cares for adults and children with life limiting illnesses, is a lifeline to many families, supporting people through some of their most challenging times. The hospice relies heavily on the support of the community to continue caring for local families, needing to raise more than £3 million each year.