Staff at the Marks and Spencer store in Bury St Edmunds have pledged to support a hospital appeal for the year which is set to be officially launched in the coming weeks.
They will be backing the Butterfly Appeal which is being run by the My WiSH charity and which supports the West Suffolk Hospital.
It is aiming to raise money to help enhance care for patients at the end of their lives, both in the hospital and out in the community.
The hospital treats and a huge proportion of palliative and end-of-life patients in the area and My WiSH works closely with staff to find out what is needed and where it can help to ensure relatives, friends and loved ones are cared for too as this in turn, gives the patient comfort.
Packs are created when someone is called unexpectedly into hospital which consists of tissues, water, wipes, toothbrush and toothpaste among other things. Just little things to make patients more comfortable during their stay.
They also provide day beds and are seeking to purchase more as they allow relatives to stay with their loved ones but also get some much-needed sleep whilst never leaving their side.
Another new addition to the service is two screens. These have beautiful images on of a beach, woodland and fields and help to make the patient environment better.
And by supporting the Butterfly appeal over the next 12 months staff at M&S are helping to make those last moments a little easier, help support patients and their loved ones at a difficult time as well backing plans to expand the appeal.
They will be having collection tins throughout the store in the town centre and My WiSH are also planning to hold awareness days for the staff and in store with customers.
Julie Hill, who works in the food hall and is the point of contact for the hospital charity and also the environmental champion at the store, said: “We are more than happy to be involved in the appeal and we are going to be doing as much as possible to boost it. We plan to have a static bike in the store for staff to use to help raise money and we will also organise a cake sale and possibly a bag packing initiative.
“It’s very much in its early days but we have offered to do various things to help support the appeal and get members of staff involved. We have around 100 members of staff and we are one big family and everyone is planning to get involved as much as possible. We really want to get behind the project.”
Sally Daniels, the My WiSH appeal manager, added: We are absolutely thrilled to be supported by Marks & Spencer and are looking forward to working with them over the next 12 months. We have already had some NCS volunteers bag pack in the store to fundraise for us and the staff were all so welcoming.”