When Great Western Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust’s charity, Brighter Futures, launched Brighter Futures Blanketeers in January this year, they were overwhelmed by the amazing response of the local knitting and crocheting community who attended the launch meeting.
From that initial meeting, monthly meetings were set up at the Tesco Community Hub for Blanketeers to get together to knit and chat over a cup of coffee. Other knitters took part by knitting squares and blankets in their own homes.
Thanks to the support of Swindon’s knitters, a project to knit blankets for end of life patients at Great Western Hospital was up and running.
Unfortunately, back in March, Brighter Futures made the decision to stop accepting blankets and squares to help reduce the footfall on site during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Now, they are pleased to be in a position to resume accepting knitted items.
The first date for collections will take place on Thursday 10 September, from 10:00am to 3:00pm. The Brighter Futures gazebo will be positioned opposite the main bus stops at the front of the hospital and blankets and squares can be dropped off there.
Social distancing guidelines must be followed when dropping off items at the hospital.
The charity appreciate that not everyone will be able to get to the hospital on September 10 and so they will be looking to use a central location in October, with more information to follow.
The Trust’s Chief Executive, Kevin McNamara, will formally hand over the blankets to the Trust’s End of Life Team so that they can start to be given to patients receiving end of life care .
These blankets will bring colour and homeliness to the clinical environment, and will comfort patients in their last days and minutes of life.
Anne Norman, Commemorative Giving Manager for Brighter Futures, said: “We would like to thank all the Blanketeers for their continued support and patience during this challenging time.
“We are so proud of to be a part of the Swindon community, and to be working with you to support patients at our hospital.
“If you can’t make it to us next week, please don’t worry as we will be looking at other ways to get to all of you.
“We look forward to seeing all our Blanketeers again and can’t wait to see how many knitted items we are delivered. I know they will all go a long way in bringing comfort to families and their loved ones in their final moments.”
If you’d like to become a Brighter Futures Blanketeers, please contact the team on 01793 604031 or join the Facebook group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/658469228292225.