Cyprus Mail

Widow’s legacy a welcome boost for hospice

The Archangel Michael hospice in Mesa Chorio

By Bejay Browne

ARCHANGEL MICHAEL HOSPICE in Mesa Chorio in Paphos has received its first legacy from the sale of an apartment in Kato Paphos.
According to hospice general manager, Mona Skordi, the apartment was gifted by a supporter from the UK in memory of her late husband.
“The legacy of 50,000 euros will go towards helping to fund the hospice – a registered charity – to provide care for a considerable time, as it’s a large amount of money,” she said.
Although considerable sums of money have been donated to the hospice before, this is the first legacy gifted and the first large amount of money received since the hospice opened its doors just over three months ago, she said.
The hospice offers palliative and respite care to anyone in need, regardless of the nature of the illness, the patient’s religion or nationality. This includes people with cancer and other serious illnesses, such as motor neuron disease, heart failure and end stage respiratory and kidney disease.
The hospice opened its doors in June and has been very busy since then, said Skordi. “We have been far busier than we expected.”
It took around 18 months to obtain the licence for the nine-bed facility which is set on a large plot in Mesa Chorio, and benefits from a mature garden. A large terrace with sea views also enables patients and their families to enjoy the fresh air.
Of the nine rooms, two are also licensed for use by children if required. “We offer the only dedicated children’s hospice resources in Cyprus,” she said.
The facility also has a cafeteria, a conference room, a chapel, reception and an office.
The hospice is purpose built and care is available free of charge.
The hospice has cost over €2 million to date, which includes the purchase of the land, construction and vital equipment.
“We are expecting the hospice to cost around €300,000 a year to operate, which will cover everything, from staff salaries and medication to running expenses.”
The general manager pointed out that the hospice, unlike nursing and care homes, is utilised by patients usually for periods of around 14 days, which is the norm for the hospice movement, she said. She added that this means that the services are available to a wider group of people.
“Funding for the hospice comes from the six hospice shops, events and other methods of fundraising.”
On Friday October 16, a fund raising event titled ‘A Grand Day Out’ will see supporters participate in a day trip aboard a bus travelling through the checkpoint in Nicosia.
Skordi added that whilst the legacy is welcome, every euro of support is vital, and she urged supporters to continue with their outstanding efforts. She also praised the efforts of the hospice volunteers and the ten Cyprus government registered nursing staff.
“Visitors are welcome to visit the hospice and see what we do for themselves and more information is available on our website.”
The hospice is the second one to open in the area: the Friends Hospice in Paphos first opened in 2006 and is also financed almost completely by fund raising events, income from their charity shops and donations. The hospice also provides palliative and respite care for people suffering with life-limiting illnesses, and their families. It is housed in a dedicated six bed wing at St George’s Polyclinic in Paphos.
For further information please contact Mona Skordi on 99494140.

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