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Sessions will put Hospice at the heart of Newmarket community
St Nicholas Hospice Care will officially launch its Newmarket Open House, at Newmarket Day Centre, on Tuesday, 6 December.
The Newmarket Open House sessions, which will continue to be held on the first Tuesday of the month from 2pm to 4pm, offer support to those receiving end-of-life care and their loved ones, with staff and volunteers on hand to greet visitors and answer any questions they may have.
Hospice Nurse Gill Austin said: “We are very excited that we are able to take our Hospice’s support into the heart of Newmarket, offering an Open House drop in coffee afternoon on the first Tuesday of every month, as a joint venture with Newmarket Day Centre.
“Our Open House sessions offer a friendly environment where people can drop in for tea or coffee. Often acting as an introduction to our Hospice services, and a place where people can come and be signposted to further help and guidance.
“Often taking the first step towards getting any sort of help can be daunting. With our Open House sessions we create a welcoming environment where people feel relaxed and comfortable.
“With our first session in the town taking place on Tuesday, 6 December, which is St Nicholas Day, we really hope as many people as possible will be able to join us.”
The charity, which helps people across West Suffolk and Thetford, focuses on providing end-of-life care which is tailored to the individual and in the place they need it.
Anna Cullinane, a grandmother of 13 with four great grandchildren, has been coming to the Hospice’s Bury St Edmund’s Open House for more than four years.
In 2011 at the age of 72 Anna, who lives in Newmarket, was diagnosed with incurable blood cancer of the bone marrow.
Anna said: “When I was diagnosed – I just gave up. I thought that was it. My middle son Michael however had other ideas, he had found out about the Hospice and he brought me along.
“I didn’t really want to go as I believed I was going to die and that was that. But my son insisted, he said you are going and that’s that.”
Now 77, Anna says coming along to the Open House sessions and finding out more about the Hospice’s services changed her life.
Anna said: “Coming to the Open House encouraged me to come out of myself again; I had retreated inwards when I was first diagnosed.
“I didn’t want to leave the house and I didn’t want to talk to anyone. Coming to Open House changed that, it gave me the chance to meet people, to socialise and to get out of the house.”
Anna, who has also become a keen fundraiser for the Hospice said she would encourage anyone thinking about attending an Open House session to come along.
“For anyone who maybe unsure about attending an Open House session – I would tell them just to do it – I would tell them I would pick them up and bring them. Open House was there when I had given up and I am so very grateful it was,” she said.