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Ron Taylor, Ambassador for Beaumond House

Now, possibly more than ever for some, our uncertain journey through this pandemic has made us focus on the things that truly matter; family, friends and neighbours, loved ones.

As a volunteer ambassador for Beaumond House I think that the service that it lovingly gives to those people that we care about is needed now more than even before the virus paralysed our communities.

Before joining the friendly staff and volunteer ‘family’ I pushed the word ‘Hospice’ into the same sombre mind compartment that held Old Age; Life Insurance and Wills. If you like, a gloom filled box whose opening was readily procrastinated.

Consequently, it was a ‘Road to Damascus’ moment of enlightenment to discover the bright, lively and loving ambiance that pervades our hospice and that of the administration offices across the street. This is where our fantastic team energetically infuse ‘fun’ into fundraising.

Last year, Beaumond House provided its unique care to five hundred families in and around Newark; your neighbours, possibly even your family or friends. It did not cost them a penny. No credit card needed. No charge.

But, of course, there is a cost. With my ‘enlightenment’ came the knowledge that our truly indispensable service is only partially funded by the State. Just to maintain Beaumond the bill was over £1 Million last year of which £600,000 had to be raised from the generous community in which we live.

That includes businesses whose owners and staff care deeply about our community and of which they form an integral part. Shortly before the ‘lock-down’ we successfully re-launched the Beaumond House Business Club comprising many local, familiar SMEs. They pay yearly subscriptions and provide additional help and participation in our fundraising events.

I have been both humbled and heartened by their generosity and solid support. The shutdown of their businesses will have hit them hard. Hopefully, we will soon welcome back their services with an even greater appreciation.

Throughout this crisis the Beaumond care team has continued to support those that needed them, either in their own home, over the phone and through in-patient beds. Rather than being ‘paralysed’, this vital service has been as active as ever.

Looking forward, the currently furloughed staff and dormant volunteers can’t wait to re-open the shops, burst some more balloons and promote delayed and new fundraising challenges and events.

All of this is to sustain Newark’s beloved Beaumond House whose care for the lives of our loved ones and neighbours is a steadfast beacon as we navigate back to more normal times. Take care.

Ron Taylor

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