East Cheshire Hospice Flower Arrangers are back! - East Cheshire Hospice

East Cheshire Hospice Flower Arrangers are back!

The last volunteer team is now finally back at East Cheshire Hospice after the pandemic.

Flower arrangers were the final helpers to return, more than two years after Covid-19 forced volunteers to be laid off.

Reception staff had been among the first wave back, weeks after lockdown began in March 2020.

Helena Smith, the Hospice’s Voluntary Services Co-ordinator, said: “The return of the flower volunteers is quite a big thing, since it feels like the final piece of the jigsaw is now back in place.

“We want to thank all our flower arrangers for their patience over the last couple of years. The flowers make quite a big difference and are greatly appreciated by patients and visitors, so it’s great that we’ll have them again.”

Flowers from donations decorate individual patient rooms and generally brighten up the Hospice.

The floral team were welcomed back with a workshop at the Picturedrome, organised by Sarah Hinchliffe, a new Hospice volunteer.

Sarah Hinchliffe points out a few floral techniques during a workshop. 

Sarah, a floral designer, opened her business North & Flower in Macclesfield last year when she moved back to the area to be close to family. Husband Adam is from the area.

Sarah said: “The floral industry isn’t very kind to the environment. I pride myself on being environmentally conscious and love telling people about it.

“This workshop with volunteers was a chance to demonstrate sustainable techniques, especially as the Hospice is moving towards becoming more eco-friendly.”

The Hospice is on the lookout for volunteer gardeners. That team has been busy helping create a Serenity Garden in the courtyard at the Hospice.

The eco-friendly project has seen an open patio space at the back of the Hospice transformed into a year-round floral retreat for patients and visitors.

The gardens surrounding the Millbank Drive complex also need regular maintenance.

Helena said: “Anyone who can spare a few hours each week is most welcome. Some of our flower arrangers are also part of the gardening team as well.

“We couldn’t do without our volunteers who help out in so many different ways. Even when they couldn’t be here during challenging times, many were still involved in various fundraising activities.

“It’s an amazing team and we can’t thank them enough for their commitment.”

* Call Helena on 01925 664984 or email hsmith@echospice.org.uk for more details.

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