Hospiscare launches Virtually Twilight as charity finds safe way to hold annual walk

Fans of the Hospiscare Twilight Walk can take part virtually this year as the charity has come up with a fresh way to hold the event amid the pandemic.

Virtually Twilight is being held on Saturday, July 4, where people can walk laps of their garden, complete a stair climb, or plan a five-mile walk locally.

Entry to the Hospiscare Virtually Twilight is £5 and once signed up, participants can download an information pack which includes a memory star that can be printed and customised at home.

Entrants are being asked to raise £30 in sponsorship to support the vital work of Hospiscare in the community.

A Virtually Twilight entry fee of £5 would pay for 100 gloves for the hospice’s nurses and doctors. Raising £30 in sponsorship will pay for a bed on the hospice ward for one hour.

The Twilight Walk, held annually in Exmouth, was cancelled by Hospiscare in April after the Government announced lockdown amid the coronavirus crisis.

The charity said the coronavirus pandemic has had ‘a significant impact’ on its fundraising efforts because its charity shops are closed and events have been cancelled, resulting in a £1million loss in income every three months.

The need for personal protective equipment during the pandemic has added an extra £1,800 a month to Hospiscare’s costs, the charity said.

A Hospiscare spokeswoman said: “In April, Hospiscare made the difficult decision to cancel this year’s Twilight Walk due to the coronavirus pandemic.

“Since then, the charity has been overwhelmed by their supporters’ ingenuity as they have found ways to organise events and fundraise virtually.

“After careful consideration, Hospiscare decided to create an event that captures the essence of the Twilight Walk, whilst also being safe for all participants.”

She added: “The Twilight Walk has always been an incredibly social event with participants taking part in large groups with family and friends.

“Hospiscare are therefore suggesting that participants use Facetime or Zoom to share the event with their loved ones.

“Once participants have completed their walk, Hospiscare will be broadcasting a moment of reflection, followed by up-beat music from a local covers band.

“Those not able or planning on walking can still leave a dedication for a loved one and Hospiscare will light a candle in their memory during the Virtually Twilight evening.”

Hospiscare is the local hospice charity for Exeter, Mid and East Devon, providing care for people with terminal illnesses, and their families.

The care Hospiscare provides – in the patient’s home, or at one of the hospices – is funded by donations and is at no cost for the patient.

The charity receives 15 per cent of its funding from the NHS and relies upon community support to be able to offer its service.

To sign up for Virtually Twilight, visit www.twilightwalk.org.uk or give the fundraising team a call on 01392 688020.

Updated interactive map shows where coronavirus deaths have been recorded in East Devon and Exeter

About Author