St Clare Hospice is calling for people to help fundraise £30,000 this year to celebrate their 30th anniversary since opening.

Since forming in 1990, the specialist palliative care charity in Hastingwood has supported more than 15,000 families cope with a loved one receiving end of life care.

To mark the milestone, the hospice is looking for 30 companies across west Essex to each raise £1,000 through exciting fundraising activities with their staff.

Sarah Thompson, chief executive of St Clare Hospice, said: “30 years ago St Clare was founded by a small group of dedicated people who had the vision to support all local people facing death, dying and loss.

“From the seed that was planted three decades ago, and with the support of our generous local communities and supporters, we have grown to become a leading organisation in the field of specialist palliative care.”

Epping Forest Guardian:

One of the first Trustee meetings for St Clare Hospice in 1900

Around 2,900 people die each year in west Essex, with an estimated that 75 per cent of these deaths to have been predictable.

“We also know that the number of people who die in hospital in our local area is higher than the national average,” Ms Thompson explained. “and yet the vast majority of people would prefer to die in their own home or a hospice.”

One of the Hospice’s longest standing members of staff is the medical director, Dr Qamar Abbas, who joined St Clare in 2000 when the Inpatient Unit first opened.

Dr Abbas commented: “When I joined St Clare back in 2000 I was the only doctor and we had less than 50 staff in total.

“We now have five doctors, more than 170 staff and over 550 volunteers. We cared for around 350 patients a year in 2000 and now we support more than 1,500 people annually and offer support services to an additional 500 family and friends.”

“We wouldn’t have been able to grow our services and support this many people without the ongoing support of our local community.

For more information about plans to mark St Clare Hospice’s 30th birthday, visit: