Thousands of people have supported our hospital over the years raising money for our charity Blue Skies Hospitals Fund. Sometimes this is for fun and for others it can be in loving memory of someone they have lost.
As part of NHS75, we caught up with Becky Turner who to date has raised more than £25,000 for the Haematology Unit at Blackpool Victoria Hospital in loving memory of her brother Tom who lost his battle with leukaemia aged 29 in 2020.
Reflecting on those first 24 hours of Tom being admitted, Becky remembers how her brother expressed wanting to fundraise for the unit.
Several years later Tom’s words are still having a lasting impact on both patients and their loved ones on the unit.
“As per Tom’s wishes, we have enabled all of the patient side rooms on the haematology ward to be painted with beautiful murals including some places that were special to Tom such as Las Vegas,” said Becky.
“We also paid for seven CADD pumps which will allow for patients to safely administer their own chemotherapy in the comfort of their own homes.”
She added: “Knowing that we are raising money for the ward that looked after Tom so brilliantly means a lot to us. He talked about fundraising often during his time in hospital and we are proud to be doing it in his name.”
Jo Wilson, Haematology Ward Manager, said: “I was here when Tom was first admitted and have been on this journey with his family since. When I look back to how the ward felt and looked before the fundraising efforts, this must be marked as a milestone in our history. Now it is bright, fresh and a place that brings comfort to those who work here and visit as patients.
“The seven CADD pumps have revolutionised the way we operate on the unit, and it is not something we will forget.”
Between 2019 and 2022, Blue Skies Hospitals Fund has invested nearly £1.5m of charitable funding into Blackpool Teaching Hospitals and this is one of many stories that has enhanced patient care.