Teessiders suffering from Covid-19 have been dying alone in our hospitals and hospices unable to keep in contact with their loved ones – but a major appeal led by the Philanthropic Foundation means patients can now say their final farewells.
The Foundation joined forces with a National Lottery winner and several generous local companies to deliver iPad Minis to Covid wards across Teesside hospitals and hospices to allow them to stay in touch and, in some cases, say their last goodbyes to family and friends.
The idea was started by Russell Jameson on his Teesside Help Facebook page, who set up a Go Fund Me page to raise funds for iPads for James Cook University Hospital’s palliative care ward.
When our charity got involved, our trustee Emily Bentley contacted local firm iStation and agreed a special discounted price for iPad Minis.
The Foundation donated five iPads, with Emily’s company Communicate, BNI Vision chapter, our patrons Racz Group and iStation themselves adding more.
An initial delivery of 15 iPads – each pre-loaded and configured with the necessary communication programmes and engraved with the names of the donor companies – were delivered to staff at James Cook Hospital by our friends at charity Bloodrun.
There, they’re now being put to the very best of use helping local coronavirus victims to a last farewell to those they love and who love them.
And this urgent appeal continued to go from strength to strength. PD Ports – operators of Teesport and guardians of the River Tees – bought 10 for the University Hospital of Hartlepool and five more for James Cook.
The Pounder family set up a Go Fund Me page that has raised another £4,000, enabling them to buy 20 for the University Hospital of North Tees, and Middlesbrough-based psychotherapist Alex Adamson agreed to help purchase another devide.
Infant Hercules Charity Club members Tees Business have donated the funds to purchase two more iPad Minis – and put out an appeal to their clients that resulted in an incredible response from local businesses.
Thanks to Tees Business, further donations came in from local firms IMH, SABIC, Cornerstone Business Solutions, Baines Jewitt Chartered Accountants, Group Industrial, UKSE, ESCS, Wilton Centre, Jacksons Law Firm and HR Alchemy, with businessmen Richard Bendelow, Dominic Lusardi and James Pennington also making donations.
And Tees Business editor Dave Allan, who looks after our charity’s PR, approached a locally-based National Lottery winner who donated more than £13,000 more to be shared between the iPad appeal, our Shopping Vouchers Appeal for vulnerable local families and other important Covid-19-related issues.
You can make donations – of any size, large or small – to the Foundation’s ongoing appeal by clicking on the ‘Donate’ button on our website here: https://teessidecharity.org.uk/