When Brighter Futures launched Brighter Futures Blanketeers in January this year we were overwhelmed by the amazing response from all of you in the local knitting and crocheting community who attended our launch meeting. As you all know from that initial meeting monthly meetings were set up at the Tesco Community Hub for Blanketeers to get together and knit and chat over a cup of coffee. Others of you we know were knitting squares and blankets at other knitting groups or in your own home and the project to knit blankets for end of life patients here at Great Western Hospital was up and running.
Clearly the situation with Covid-19 that started in March was unprecedented and is be one of the biggest challenges our hospital, community teams and the NHS as a whole have ever faced. To keep everyone safe and in response to the guidance and advice about the COVID-19 Virus, Brighter Futures took the decision to stop accepting blankets and squares. We know this was disappointing, but the safety of all our supporters is always our priority as well as the safety of our colleagues within the NHS.
Both the Brighter Futures and End of Life teams have taken inspiration from all the beautiful blankets you have showcased on the Blanketeers page. You have all been amazing.
The really good news is that is has now been agreed that Brighter Futures on behalf of Great Western Hospital End of Life Team can start to accept blankets and squares and the first date for this to happen is Thursday 10th September from 10a.m. to 3p.m. The Brighter Futures gazebo will be positioned opposite the main bus stops at the front of the hospital and blankets and squares can be dropped off there. For people coming by car there is still currently no charge for parking and to get to the gazebo easily please use one of the car parks at the front of the hospital.
Brighter Futures appreciate that not everyone will be able to get to the hospital on the 10th September and so we will be looking to potentially use a central location in October however this may not be possible due to Covid restrictions. If we could ask that that anyone who can’t make the 10th September is patient and we will find ways to accept your blankets and squares as everyone’s hard work is very much appreciated.
Our Chief Executive Kevin McNamara will formally hand over the blankets to the End of Life Team on 11th September so that they can start to be used. These blankets will bring a little colour and homeliness to the clinical environment.