The National Garden Scheme has been supporting Marie Curie since 1996, raising over £9.5 million in that time, making us the single largest funder of their work. In 2021 despite continuing challenges and restrictions caused by the pandemic, we donated £525,000 to help Marie Curie continue caring for people living with a terminal illness, and their families. This donation includes a one-off, extra payment of £25,000 to help launch the NGS Nightingale Challenge.
Marie Curie is the UK’s leading charity for people with any terminal illness. The charity helps people living with a terminal illness and their families make the most of the time they have together by delivering expert hands-on care, emotional support, research and guidance.
Marie Curie employs more than 2,700 nurses, doctors and other healthcare professionals, and with its nine hospices around the UK, is the largest provider of hospice beds outside the NHS.
In 2017 the National Garden Scheme began sponsoring a Marie Curie Bursary Fund for clinical staff. The National Garden Scheme Bursary Fund helps pay for Marie Curie Nurses and other clinical staff at the charity to undertake post-registered qualifications or specialist university modules in palliative and end of life care.
The scheme aims to raise levels of knowledge and expertise among clinical staff and ultimately provide those living with terminal illnesses and their families, with the highest possible standards of care and support.
Marie Curie Nurse, Ian Chisholm has worked at the Marie Curie hospice in Edinburgh for ten years and is currently completing a master’s degree in palliative care thanks to the Bursary Fund. He explains:
“I used to be a hotel manager for many years so I’m used to worrying about delivering the best customer service. Now, in my role as a Marie Curie Nurse, my main focus is on how I can deliver the best quality care. I feel that my master’s degree has been instrumental in making me a better, more confident nurse and ultimately helps me provide the best possible care to patients and their families.
“It’s given me a different way of looking at what I do and what others do. I sometimes think, is there a better way we can go about this? What is the evidence behind what we’re doing? I’m also able to pass on my knowledge to newer members of staff, which I’ve been doing quite actively in my role as Practice Educator at the hospice.
“We’re here to help people get the most out of life and one of things that I think makes a massive difference is if they have faith in the people that they’re dealing with. If you’re knowledgeable then you come across as being confident and that confidence can be a massive comfort to patients and their families at a difficult time. It helps people psychologically adjust to their situation – they know that when we’re called upon, we are qualified to do the job to the best of our ability.”
If you have questions about terminal illness, need support or just want to talk, call the Marie Curie Support Line on 0800 090 2309. It’s for anyone affected by terminal illness, including family and friends.
For more information visit www.mariecurie.org.uk
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