Larne Support Group pays visit to new £13m NI Hospice

Larne Hospice Support visit to the new hospice facility at Somerton House.  INLT 25-657-CON
Larne Hospice Support visit to the new hospice facility at Somerton House. INLT 25-657-CON

Larne NI Hospice Support Group got to see the fruits of their efforts during a recent visit to the charity’s new £13m dementia-friendly adult hospice in Belfast.

Since 2013, support groups based all over Northern Ireland have raised funds from events including coffee-morning gatherings to carol services, funfairs and dances to contribute an amazing £909,973.45 for the adult hospice rebuild project and service running costs.

The groups, including the local Larne support group, were shown the 18 bedded en-suite in-patient unit where each of the rooms are complemented by private gardens allowing patients and families to enjoy the outdoors. They saw how the new bedrooms will provide a warm and comfortable environment; a home from home experience with plenty of space to spend time together with privacy and dignity and access to professional care.

Support group members were also guided to the new day hospice where patients using the in-patient unit and those also receiving care from hospice nurses in the community can come on dedicated days to enjoy some light entertainment, take part in activities and get the opportunity to see a consultant. The groups also passed the in house hair salon, where volunteer hairdressers will treat patients to a pamper session.

Jennifer Beattie from the Larne Support Group said: “As dedicated fundraisers to NI Hospice, the Larne Support Group was delighted to get the chance to see the new building before patients moved in.

“We have been involved in fundraising with hospice for 23 years and it is fantastic to see how things have progressed since we began. NI Hospice started off caring for six patients in Somerton House and today with both In-Patient services and services in the community; they care for over 3,000 patients each year.

“The new building provides a home from home for both patients and families and offers all the facilities needed to make patients as comfortable as possible. It will help to ease concerns of patients and their families and enable them to spend much needed time together in an environment that can ensure they are pain-free and comfortable.”