Runners and South West region collaborate to help local hospice

07 September 2023

Local Devon charity, Hospiscare, has secured a £1,000 donation from our South West region after an application from two of its charity runners.

South West region received an application for its Community Champions scheme from Rachel Payne and Kate Smith, both of whom competed in races including the London Marathon 2023, to raise money for the hospice.

Representatives of the five-star builder presented the cheque to them at their Exeter site, Searle House, named after their founder, alongside local councillor, Marina Asvachin.

Cllr Asvachin and the business then heard about Hospiscare’s work in the community: the organisation supports around 2,500 patients and their families each year, providing specialist end-of-life care across Exeter, Mid and East Devon. Those who have been diagnosed with any type of terminal illness can turn to Hospiscare’s expert doctors and nurses for help.

Their services include support at home, a specialist palliative care ward at Searle House, out-patient clinics, and supportive therapies. The charity also runs training for medical students and have 16 charity shops. Over 600 volunteers, regular donors, and supporters help enable Hospiscare to care for patients and families when they’re most in need.

We are developing at Cranbrook to the east of Exeter, and have had an extensive presence in the area since its expansion was confirmed over a decade ago. Properties from the seventh phase of the Galileo site will be coming onto the market soon.

It has also just sold its final property at Hill Barton Vale in Exeter, but still has properties ranging from two to five-bed homes available at Ashworth place – located between the M5 and the city’s airport – priced from £249,995.

At Persimmon we employ over 5,000 people directly and support over 80,000 jobs in the supply chain, and its long-established Community Champions programme sees over £700,000 spent on good causes across Britain each year.

Other recent recipients in the area include Newton Abbot College, a Cullompton playgroup, and Ladysmith Infant & Junior School in Exeter.

Our South West region Sales Director Stacey Harris said:

“Hospiscare is a great local charity that provides a really important service to those who need it, so we were delighted to receive Rachel and Kate’s application and be in a position to help.

“Our Community Champions scheme is there to support local good causes and those great organisations that make places like Exeter and Cranbrook places where people want to live.

“Those homes we are building will be filled with potential volunteers and can continue to support Hospiscare’s work for generations to come.”

Alice Pragnell, Hospiscare’s Corporate and Events Coordinator, commented:

“We feel very privileged at Hospiscare to have fantastic volunteers and fundraisers like Rachel and Kate, and we’re so grateful that they got in touch with Persimmon to secure this donation. Without people like Rachel and Kate taking on challenges or holding events, without people shopping in our shops or leaving gifts in their Wills and without companies like Persimmon showing their support, we simply couldn’t continue to deliver our services.

“We receive just 18% of our funding from the NHS and need to raise around £8 million a year to continue providing our specialist service. Persimmon’s funding is much appreciated, and we will ensure it is put to good use.”

Cllr Marina Asvachin, Exeter City Councillor for Priory and Devon County Councillor for Wonford & St Loyes, added:

“I was pleased to join Persimmon and Hospiscare to discuss the good work of the hospice and how the housebuilder’s donation will help them.

“It is a delight to see businesses like Persimmon support such a good cause in my ward – Hospiscare is one I know is really appreciated by every family that comes into contact with it – and I know that money will be a real help to its staff and patients.”

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At Persimmon we're proud to support our local communities. Our Community Champions programme was established in 2015 and has already donated more than £3 million to over 3,500 good causes across Great Britain. We also have a programme of community events taking place as part of our partnership with Team GB for the 2024 Paris Olympics, along with other great initiatives. 


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