Fundraisers in the Friends of East Surrey Hospital are marking a money-raising milestone.
For the Friends are celebrating having raised £3 million for the Redhill hospital over the last 30 years.
The group, made up of 330 volunteers, have raised the remarkable sum through the ‘Friends’ coffee shops.
The money allows Surrey and Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust, which runs the hospital, to provide a little bit extra by way of improvements to patient facilities and specialist training. Last year, the Friends donated £150,000 to pay for Wi-Fi across the whole hospital, so now all patients and visitors can get internet access for free. Friends' donations have also paid for heated baby mattresses in the Neonatal Unit and extra televisions and earphones for Radio Redhill, the award-winning radio station based in the hospital.
Chairman of the Friends of East Surrey, Richard Burford, said: “It has been my privilege to work with very remarkable and really dedicated groups of volunteers, who have done so much to help to improve the lot of the hospital’s patients, staff and visitors.”
Mr Burford, who has led the group for ten years, added: “It has been a wonderful experience to witness the benefits that our charity has brought to our hospital and to our local community.”
Friends volunteer Keith Hiscock has been donating his time for 15 years. He said: “My wife was a physiotherapist here and when she retired, she persuaded me to come along with her and help at the coffee shop.”
He said: “It’s a really nice thing to do, you meet lots of people, and everyone has a story to tell.”
For more details about the Friends of East Surrey Hospital, visit their website at: www.foesh.co.uk or the Trust’s website at: www.surreyandsussex.nhs.uk