Celebrities, doctors, nurses, therapists and patients made a huge splash at the Royal United Hospitals (RUH) today to mark a £1 million pledge from business couple Andrew and Christina Brownsword and their Charitable Foundation to launch The Forever Friends Appeal’s new “RNHRD and Therapies Centre” Campaign.
As the primary charity at Bath’s Royal United Hospitals, the Appeal and their new campaign aims to raise a total of over £2 million to support the building of a new, state-of-the-art RNHRD and Therapies Centre. This purpose built outpatient facility will provide treatment, care and education for patients to recover from episodes of illness or injury, or to manage their long-term condition. The Brownsword family have promised to match £1 million worth of donations from the public and other donors to help raise this total – through “The Brownsword Challenge”.
Andrew Brownsword, visiting the hydrotherapy pool in the existing RUH Therapies Department today met Appeal Ambassadors, staff and patients and launched the new Campaign. Mr Brownsword said: “By establishing this ‘Brownsword Match Funding Challenge’ we want to ensure that every pound the public donates is matched with another pound from us to help the Appeal reach its target. After hearing patient experiences such as Nic Noble’s, we were compelled to get involved. Please join us in raising as much as possible to ensure this new Centre, so important to the most effective and best possible care of patients and their families, takes shape over the next two years”.
Appeal Ambassadors, Para-Olympic medallists Stephanie Millward and Ben Rushgrove, together with TV presenter Martin Roberts, all lent their support to the Match Funding Challenge today. The Celebrities, all used to challenges of their own, encouraged the public to support the fundraising Campaign for this important new building.
The RNHRD and Therapies Centre building will house Rheumatology, Therapies and a number of Pain Management Services under one roof, bringing together RUH services and services relocated from the RNHRD (Royal National Hospital for Rheumatic Diseases).
Gina Sargeant, Head of Therapies at the RUH and RNHRD said: “We’re creating a nurturing environment with dedicated specialist facilities for our patients. Designed in conjunction with staff and patients, the Centre will include a large hydrotherapy pool, specialist gym and rehabilitation equipment, and a Biologics treatment space to support treatment, recovery, wellbeing and the management of long-term conditions. The expertise, heritage and international reputation of the RNHRD will combine with a local reputation for excellent care, leading to the provision of a unique facility at District General Hospital level for the benefit of thousands of people across Bath, Somerset and Wiltshire”.
Dr Raj Sengupta, Consultant Rheumatologist at the RNHRD said: “The numerous services planned to be collocated in the new building are not always as high in public profile as say some treatments for Cancer. However, if you are one of the 75,000 people that will be treated in the new RNHRD and Therapies Centre, they are essential to the nurturing of your recovery or treatment – they are fundamental to nearly all patient ‘journeys’ through the hospital.”
The Forever Friends Appeal are thrilled by the support given by the Brownsword Family and its Charitable Foundation. Tim Hobbs Head of Fundraising commented: “Our current facilities for these services are costly to maintain and update in order to meet modern healthcare standards. They are also too dispersed across the hospital and on two different sites. This situation does not complement or help facilitate the hospital’s aims for achieving the highest quality of clinical care. Therefore the generous support we have received from the Brownsword family is absolutely vital to our patients. We hope it will encourage the public to get involved and help us reach our target of £2million which will complement the circa £14 million being invested in the building from NHS sources”.
Mr Hobbs continues: “The public’s charitable donations working in partnership with NHS funding are really important – they enable the clinicians and project managers to ‘think out of the box’, innovate, and make our facilities really special for patients here at the RUH. There are many ways to get involved – the Brownsword Match Funding Challenge will maximise the impact of people’s efforts, such as our Therapies Staff taking part in the Appeal’s Fire and Ice Walk on Sunday 5th March to kick start their fundraising efforts. Here are a few more……”.
- Make a donation in person, by phone, online or by post using the form in this newspaper
- Take part in one of our many events throughout the year and designate your sponsorship, eg The Fire and Ice Walk, Sun 5th March or The Walk of Life, Sat 13th
- Organise an event with colleagues, a group or club
- Make a gift in memory of a loved one
- Set up a Tribute Fund
- Get your workplace involved as charity of the year
- Join our Community or Corporate Partnership schemes
- Leave a gift in your will
- Text TFFA17 £10 to 70070 and instantly make a donation