Sharon Webster

25 for 25



Dear Friend and Supporter of St. Michael's Hospice,

To celebrate St. Michael’s Hospice 25th anniversary I am writing on their behalf to ask you to donate £25 to celebrate and remember the past 25 years. I am one of the many people who have been touched by their care and compassion. By supporting the Hospice with this Appeal you can help secure their services to families for many years to come.

My family and I have experienced St. Michael’s Hospice as my father was one of their first patients 25 years ago and they cared for my mother 21 years later.  The Hospice is an integral part of our community and with your support it can continue to operate for many years to come.

I am slightly ashamed to say that in 1992 I had never heard of a Hospice or had any idea as to what they did. I recall a conversation between clinicians and my mother at Basingstoke Hospital when my father’s condition worsened in his fearless fight against cancer.  Dad was one of the very first patients and after staying in the Hospice for some time his symptoms and pain stabilised and we managed to get him home. The Hospice staff made him very comfortable and despite my mother keeping a hawk like watch over the nurses and doctors, Dad was at ease and Mum was relieved that she could keep him in the family home. I remember Dad thanking Mum for a wonderful life and softly telling her he was ready, ‘it was his time’. Dad died peacefully at home in August 1992 aged 73.

After Dad’s death my mother assumed her previously unspoken title of Head of House.  Mum provided all seven of her children with infinite amounts of love and inspired us with her strength and determination despite all the challenges that had gone before. Mum would take us on family holidays and did a remarkable job of raising us.  In July 2013 Mum was admitted to the Hospice after spending five years battling Myelodysplastic, a blood condition.  Mum didn’t want care in her home, it was her home and having others in it would mean she wasn’t in control, therefore it didn’t happen! I recall very early on when Mum was staying at the Hospice her refusing to sleep as she was concerned she may not wake up, this was despite every nurse and doctor assuring her that the pain medication she was taking was perfectly safe.  The staff caring for Mum at the Hospice were so compassionate and seemed to understand far better than us how she was feeling.  It was incredible that the Hospice would go to great lengths and that the smallest of things can make such a difference. Mum died on 20th July 2013 aged 86, 21 years after Dad. Just before Mum died she asked me to look after things, Mum wanted everything to be ‘just so’.

When I hear people talking about St. Michael’s I smile, people should never have to die in pain, feeling frightened or alone and this wonderful charity means this never has to happen. Don’t feel sad or worried when you think of the Hospice, smile like me and be grateful that we have such a wonderful place so close us when we need it. I can only hope and pray that it can continue to change people’s lives when time is often so limited.

Please help this appeal be a success by giving anything you can. Only by coming together as a community can we ensure generations to come can benefit from their care and compassion.

With my warmest regards,

Sharon Webster


To support our 25 for 25 appeal you can follow the link to our Donate page, text 'SMHA25 £25' to 70070, pop into one of our shops or post a cheque made payable to St. Michael's Hospice (North Hampshire) to Basil de Ferranti House, Aldermaston Road, Basingstoke, Hampshire, RG24 9NB.

Thank you.

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