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Christmas is just around the corner – the season of goodwill, the season of giving, and every year the time to express our solidarity with our fellow men. This year we decided to go without – dispensing with Christmas cards, clichés, gifts and waste paper – so that we could provide practical and sustainable help where it’s really needed. The choice was not an easy one, and after a democratic vote among our staff we decided to make a financial and material donation to a small Hamburg organisation that attracts far too little attention.
“We cannot give a life more days, but we can give days more life.” Following this principle, the Sternenbrücke children’s hospice helps terminally ill children and young people to spend their final days in dignity with their parents and siblings. The hospice can accommodate twelve terminally ill young people up to the age of 27 and their families for at least 28 days of respite care per year and for an unlimited period during the final phase of the patient’s life. The aim of the children’s hospice is to provide affected families with lasting and professional support on their difficult journey – from diagnosis, during the often long period of illness, in the final stage of life, and also after bereavement.
Because the legal framework for statutory funding organisations such as health and nursing care insurance companies or social and youth welfare offices to finance children’s hospices is not yet sufficiently regulated in Germany, Sternenbrücke is dependent on annual donations of around EUR 1.7 million to cover the costs of care and assistance, medical, therapeutic and educational staff, repairs and renovation investments so that they can continue to be open to all those affected, regardless of their financial situation.
We are even more pleased to announce that all donations made between 1 December 2011 and 31 January 2012 on the http://www.sternenbruecke.de/ website will be doubled by Bethe-Stiftung!
Every Euro counts – we would like to set an example and do something positive for the terminally ill patients at Sternenbrücke. On this note, we would like to wish you and all the patients, employees, friends and supporters of the Sternenbrücke children’s hospice a merry Christmas!
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