Here are answers to some of the questions you may have about our "Count Me In" appeal. 

What is Count Me In?

We know that there are a large number of people who already support the work of Countess Mountbatten Hospice, for which we are truly grateful. However, we also know that there are many people living in Southampton and the wider county of Hampshire who don’t even realise that Countess Mountbatten Hospice is their local hospice.  

“Count Me In” is a campaign to raise awareness of your local hospice. We are your local hospice if you live in the areas of Southampton, Eastleigh, Hamble, Netley, Romsey, Hedge End, Locks Heath, Bishop's Waltham, New Alresford and parts of Winchester. 

We also hope to raise awareness that Countess Mountbatten Hospice belongs to you, our local community. Since April 2019, we have been an independent hospice, which is no longer run by the NHS. This change means that we now need our community’s support to help raise the £6m we need - each and every year - to continue providing our services for free to those who need us most.  Your support now is more crucial than ever. 

In the short term, we must raise an additional £1m by April 2020 and we hope that our ‘Count Me In’ campaign will inspire all members of our community to understand and support our work.  

Why does the NHS no longer run Countess Mountbatten Hospice?

Countess Mountbatten Hospice has been run by the University Hospital Southampton NHS Foundation Trust for the last 40 years. In September 2018, Mountbatten Isle of Wight was asked to lead a ground-breaking new partnership with Countess Mountbatten Hospice. In April 2019, Mountbatten Isle of Wight took over the running of Countess Mountbatten Hospice as an independent charity, which means that we need greater ownership of the hospice by the local community in order to develop much-needed services for the future. 

We still have some financial support from the NHS, as we will continue to be supported by the local Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs), Southampton City CCG and West Hampshire CCG, who are behind our efforts to develop a hospice model for the future. We have already been able to improve support to local families by introducing a much-needed bereavement and psychology service, along with other initiatives to support our community, such as our new community choir.  Other new services, such as growing our 24/7 care at home and detailed care coordination are still needed.

Why launch the campaign now?

The new partnership has been an unprecedented and complex change – there is no roadmap and it has taken some time to understand the complexities of such a ground-breaking initiative. We now have a much better understanding of what the local communities need from hospice services and how we can best use our scarce resources to put this in place. This is all set against a backdrop of rapidly increasing demand for services. By launching our ‘Count Me In’ campaign now, we hope to be in a much better position to sustain and expand our services from the new financial year and the ongoing future. 

What impact will my donation make?

Any size of donation, whether pennies or pounds, will make a huge difference to the care and services we can provide to you and our community. Currently, only 1 in 4 people get access to our care and we believe that everyone who is facing death, dying and bereavement deserves our support. 

Your donations will help us to sustain our current services to ensure we can be there for you when you need us most. In the longer term, it will mean that we can reach even more people who really need our services. 

How can I get involved and make a difference?

There are many ways that you can get involved and make a difference: 

  • Help us raise £1m! In the short term, we must raise an additional £1m by April 2020 to continue providing our services at the same levels as we currently do. You can support us through fundraising, giving a donation online directly through our Count Me In website or, in the longer term, leaving a Gift in your will. You can find out more information about our regular events and other ways to fundraise on our main website
  • Shout about us! One of the most powerful ways you can support Countess Mountbatten Hospice is by telling all your friends, family and colleagues about our work and the need for support. Many people don’t even know that our hospice now belongs to the communities of Southampton and wider county of Hampshire – we are here for you when you need us most, and we want to be here for the future. Help us to spread the word about our services and the need for support by downloading posters and more. 
  • Get involved! We can’t do this alone; we are going to need your support to get the word out and share news about our ‘Count Me In’ campaign. If you’d like to informally volunteer in this way, perhaps by helping us to get our posters out or helping us with a stand at local supermarkets etc, please get in touch! Unfortunately, we’re not able to formally recruit volunteers for other areas of our hospice until next year, but this could be a great way to start thinking about getting more involved in 2020! 

What happens if you don't reach your target?

We know that our community will want to help us to reach the target and we are so very grateful for everything you do for us! We are confident that, with your help, the need for community support will reach far and wide. However, in the event we don’t reach the target, we won’t be able to develop our services as quickly as we would like for our local community. We may even have to look at scaling back on some of our current services in order to become more financially stable. Of course, this would be a last resort and we very much hope to be able to avoid this scenario

Who benefits from your services?

The way we are all dying is changing. People are now dying over much longer periods of time, with multiple serious illnesses. This means the way hospices operate is also changing. No longer do we just support people in the last hours and days of someone’s life – we are now involved much sooner, to ensure that people get just the right amount of help when they need it. This also helps people to become more familiar with the idea of hospice care, demystifying our work and making it less frightening for people who need our services.  

It is also a little known fact that hospices no longer care solely for people living with cancer. Our services can be accessed by anyone in the last phase of their life, whatever their illness and this includes dementia, frailty, neurological conditions, heart failure and many other life-limiting illnesses. 

What about the hospice that is due to be built in Winchester? 

We welcome the NHS's development of palliative care beds as part of Hampshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust’s services. With only 1 in 4 people currently getting access to our specialist hospice care, alongside growing demand as we all get older and live with more serious conditions, there is increasing need for end of life services. We are keen to work together with Winchester Hospice to provide people right across the area with our specialist services also being available to the communities of Winchester and its surrounding area.  

Are you involved with any national charities?

No, we are a local, independent charity. National charities, such as Macmillan and Marie Curie, provide support services to people in our local community who may be nearing the end of their lives. However, we don't currently receive any funding from national charities including Macmillan or Marie Curie.