Western Isles Hospital League of Friends shored up by trust’s help

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An island charity which provides goods and services to people in hospital and care homes to make their experience a more comfortable one has had its mission of kindness secured by community wind farm charity Point and Sandwick Trust.

Western Isles Hospital League of Friends provides resources to Western Isles Hospital and local authority residential care homes Dun Eisdean and Dun Berisay, with its prime objective being to provide a level of care in hospital and beyond separate from what the NHS provides.

It runs the tea bar in the hospital in Stornoway and uses the proceeds to buy goods which will make hospital stays more comfortable for patients and enhance their wellbeing.

These range from televisions, radios, table-top fridges and microwaves for hospital wards to the mobile library service providing a range of books and subscription magazines, to the admission packs containing items such as toiletries for patients unable to access their own belongings.

They also provide Christmas gifts to the wards, birthday gifts and cards for long-stay residents, gave a contribution towards a memorial garden, do bus runs and ceilidhs over the winter and have provided packs of dementia resources to the care homes.

Although the charity also raises money through raffles, bag packing and collecting cans, most of its funds come from the tea bar, which is open for breakfast, lunch and snacks for patients, visitors and staff.

But disaster struck when their chiller cabinet broke down, severely restricting the food they were able to offer and thereby hitting their income.

Point and Sandwick Trust came to the rescue, however, with a donation of nearly £2,200 which allowed the charity to buy a new chiller and resume normal service once again.

Western Isles Hospital League of Friends chairman Roy Cameron said: ‘It has a huge impact if we can’t catch all the customers that we can because we’ve got to run our payroll costs and then have something left over, which is distributed.’

The suggestion to ask Point and Sandwick Trust for help came from League of Friends director Gordon Mackay, who is also a board member with the community wind farm charity.

Mr Mackay said: ‘On behalf of Point and Sandwick Trust, we are delighted to be giving the League of Friends money for the purchase of new equipment within the tea bar at the Western Isles Hospital.

‘The League of Friends provide such a vital service with the tea bar which assists families of patients, patients themselves and even the employees of the hospital.

‘Yet again the money is being put to good use to benefit the wider community.’