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Race into action this March to make a difference

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University Hospitals Dorset NHS Charity is calling on the Dorset community to come together and march for men’s health on Saturday 25 March.

The popular 5k or 10k event takes place at 10am from Bournemouth Pier and is an opportunity for people of all ages, abilities and genders to directly contribute significant funds to men’s health projects at the Royal Bournemouth, Poole and Christchurch hospitals.

Thousands of men from every part of our community face men’s health concerns such as prostate or testicular cancers. Please sign up today and make a difference – tickets are £15 for adults (16+) and £8 per child (under 5s free entry). All participants are encouraged to raise additional sponsorship where they can.

Consultant urological surgeon, Kevin Turner said: “With every step our supporters take along the seafront, we can continue to improve health services for every man in our community.

“March for Men helps us to do so much more for our patients. We can purchase state-of-the-art equipment to streamline diagnosis and improve treatment, for example our blue light camera system which improves bladder cancer treatment.”

Fundraising manager, Lindsey Sturman, said: “This well-loved event is great for anybody looking for a good cause to get fit for. It’s also a great way for people to give back to our hospitals or show their support with every stride for their father, son, brother, uncle, grandfather or friend who has ever received medical treatment.”

Going into its ninth year, March for Men has successfully raised more than £150,000 for men’s health projects at our hospitals so far. Revolutionary equipment like the blue light camera is innovative and expensive, so the funds raised this year will be significant in allowing us to purchase future equipment and increase the funding projects for men’s health.

Every participant will receive a charity t-shirt and medal. Dogs are welcome but must be kept on a lead. March for Men is kindly sponsored by Oak Services.

Sign up online at or by calling 0300 019 4060/8449 and follow @UHDCharity on Facebook or Instagram to enjoy the countdown!

Narnia Project: Nightclothes are not ideal attire

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University Hospitals Dorset NHS Charity has launched a project to provide patients with necessary items to support their stay and during patient transport from hospital.

Many patients at the Royal Bournemouth and Poole hospitals are admitted overnight or stay longer than expected which leaves them without appropriate clothing/items. The Narnia Project aims to reduce the number of patients leaving the hospital in gowns and instead provide clothing and a blanket for transportation, funded by generous supporters.

The pilot project has launched in Poole Hospital with a mobile wardrobe funded by the UHD NHS Charity. UHD volunteers will be responsible for regularly checking the wardrobe and keeping it stocked up. Patients can choose what items they would like.

The Narnia Project also benefits patients by encouraging them to get up and complete activities without feeling restricted due to clothing/lack of essential items. This can improve a patient’s dignity, providing them with an alternative set of day clothes and a choice of items.

You can help make sure patients aren’t restricted by donating or raising funds to support the Narnia Project. Money will go towards clothing, toiletries, blankets, reading glasses, hearing amplifiers and shoes. Please contact the charity office on 0800 019 4060/8449 to support this cause.

Walk beside the snowdrops for SPRING and bereaved parents

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To support bereaved parents who have ever experienced the grief of the loss of a baby at any stage of pregnancy, at or just after birth, University Hospitals Dorset NHS Charity is calling people to come together for its annual Snowdrop Walk on Saturday 11 February 2023.

Starting at 10.30am people can write messages and tie them to a ribbon before hearing a selection of beautiful readings and poems of remembrance before walking to the ‘winter borders’ to tie our ribbon around a tree as we remember babies that have been loved and lost.

This event is free for everybody to come along. Just get your walking shoes on ready to start at 10:30am in the Drawing Room at Upton House and Country Park, Poole Rd, Upton, Poole BH17 7BJ. Refreshments will be available afterwards in the warmth of Upton House.

SPRING is a support service for anyone who has been affected by pregnancy loss, no matter how long ago. To help parents and families through the worst possible time in their lives, events like the Snowdrop Walk simply provides the Dorset community with a moment in time to remember our babies and support one another.

SPRING’s Fundraising Officer, Zoe Wood, said: “Remembering our babies is such an important part of what SPRING does. The snowdrops are beautiful and behind each one, knowing there is a loved baby to remember, makes this a walk like no other.”

Contractor’s quiz night raises more than £2500 for hospital’s robotic tilt table appeal

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Quiz lovers came together earlier this month to test their general knowledge and raise nearly £2500 for the robotic tilting table appeal, one of University Hospitals Dorset NHS Charity’s (UHDC) main fundraising projects.

The evening was hosted and organised by the Trust’s main contractor for its transformation projects, Integrated Health Projects (IHP), the alliance between Vinci Construction UK and Sir Robert McAlpine, raising funds for the UHDC’s robotic tilting table appeal as a legacy.

Teams came from across the Bournemouth area and included subcontractors Stephenson, AT Jones, W Portsmouth, and Norstead. IHP and the hospital had multiple teams supporting the event as well as from Royal Bournemouth Hospital neighbours, Amiri and JP Morgan.

The event was not a typical quiz night with a construction element featuring a ‘tower’ building challenge, with joint winners for the tallest Jenga challenge..

The overall winners were the UHD team named ‘Stroke of Genius’ who received winners certificates, and a courtesy bottle of wine each.

IHP Project Director, Bruce Preston, said:

“It was great to be able to get together with so many of our team, professional colleagues, and hospital staff for an enjoyable evening.

“We were delighted that the evening raised over £2500 for our nominated charity and the project we are currently supporting – the UHD Charity and its robotic tilt table appeal.

“We are so grateful to all those who contributed by taking tables, buying raffle tickets and supporting this wonderful cause.”

Purbeck coastal tractor run raises £21,218.93

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Philip Trim and his son Ben presented a cheque at Poole Hospital for £21,218.93 raised during their Purbeck coastal tractor run.  The funds were raised through the tractor run, auction, campsite, entertainment, barn bar and food sold during the weekend of activity.  This event was inspired in memory of Phil’s wife Jane who was treated at the Dorset Cancer Centre, Poole Hospital.  Jane was a big part of the farming community and was well known for showing prize cattle and winning awards around the country.

Phil and Ben are pictured with Oncology Consultant Dr Mike Bayne, lung specialist nurse Alison Brooks who both treated Jane.  Also featured is Zoe Greenfield a radiographer at Poole Hospital.  The funds raised will support the surface guided radiotherapy (SGRT) equipment licence for postural video. project, Vision RT.  An incredible amount raised thank you so much for helping us make a difference.

Harry lends a hand to local cricket club’s fundraising efforts

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Thursday 18 August 2022

On Tuesday 23 August, a charity cricket match will be held at Bournemouth Cricket Club’s Chapel Gate ground to raise money for University Hospitals Dorset NHS Charity’s Vascular Fund. The two competing teams will be the Bournemouth Wanderers vs the local Hospital Services Cricket Club. Harry Redknapp will be the guest of honour for the evening.

The match has been organized by George Stratford who earlier this year, underwent successful major surgery at Royal Bournemouth Hospital for a rapidly growing abdominal aortic aneurysm. However, just a short time later, George found himself back in hospital having hemorrhaged close to a pint and a half of blood. This was caused by a leak in the implant which was fitted during his first surgery.

The leak was in the most difficult of places, right next to many vital kidney nerves and arteries. A pair of 8” long stents had to be rushed down from the manufacturers in Kent and a large team of consultants, anesthetists, radiologists and specialist theatre nurses kept George alive, with a team of experts from the stent manufacturer also joining virtually.

George Stratford said “It is a truly humbling thought to consider all the talent, brains and sheer dedication that came together to pull me through. I want to thank all of them from the bottom of my heart, from the ambulance crew who were with me within half an hour of calling 111, right through to the brilliant nurses and staff in Ward 7 who looked after me until my discharge.

But no matter how many times I expressed my gratitude to those involved, it never seemed to be enough. So, when I discovered that my consultant also happened to be captain of the local Hospital Services Cricket Club I knew just what to do.

With the help of highly respected local cricketer Jan Bridle, I have organized a cricket match to raise money for the hospital in which I received such outstanding care. What better way to say thank you to my brilliant consultant than knocking over his middle stump? Or perhaps even seeing him hit me for an enormous six? Either way would be great!”

Head down to Chapel Gate ground on Tuesday 23 August at 6pm and join George and Harry for a fantastic summers evening of cricket. Entry is free and George will be collecting donations on the day.

New sensory projector funded by University Hospitals Dorset NHS Charity brings joy to patients living with dementia

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Thursday 4 August 2022

The Royal Bournemouth Hospital recently took delivery of an innovative new piece of equipment which uses meaningful activities to encourage movement, active participation and shared enjoyment in patients living with dementia.

The omiVista Mobii interactive projection system is designed for people at all stages of dementia. It helps users achieve greater socialisation and communication, enjoyment, sustained moments of lucidity, physical movement and raised well-being levels through calming or stimulating activities. These can be projected onto floors, bedside tables and beds which make it a fully inclusive piece of equipment.

A lot of patients who are living with dementia require on-going social care in the community which can take some time to organise. As they await discharge, the time spent in hospital can negatively impact on a patient and they can at times become withdrawn. This equipment enables staff to engage their patients in meaningful group activities as well as personalised one on one activities to build relationships. There is even a function to set up an individualised scrap book using a patient’s personal pictures.

In dementia care, therapeutic engagement is so important and more often than not, it reduces the need for medications to manage the behavioural and psychological symptoms of dementia.

Katie Horswill, dementia and delirium team lead at the Royal Bournemouth Hospital said “We arranged for a demonstration of the omiVista on one of our older persons wards and instantly saw the huge positive impact it would have on our patients and staff. We are currently caring for a gentleman who is living with dementia who was quite withdrawn when he first came into hospital and we needed to find a way to engage with him. We thought we would try the omiVista and offered him the opportunity to look at the sensory equipment.

We chose to use a picture of an unpainted, black and white fence projected onto a table. I placed one of the paint brushes in the patient’s hand and asked him if he would kindly help me paint the fence.  He instantly started painting and the projected image started to fill with colour. The patient engaged in this activity for quite some time; it was so lovely to see and quite emotional to watch.”

University Hospitals Dorset NHS Charity funds new garden at Poole Hospital with Covid-19 donations as part of long term green initiative

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Thursday 21 July 2022

A courtyard at Poole Hospital has been transformed into a modern green space for staff, patients and visitors to enjoy as part of University Hospitals Dorset’s sustainability strategy. The new ‘Dolphin Garden’ was funded by University Hospitals Dorset NHS Charity with donations received during the Covid-19 pandemic.

July 2022 marks a year since UHD set out its holistic ‘Green Plan’, with ambitious net zero carbon targets among other measures. As part of this, an area outside the Dolphin Restaurant at Poole Hospital was identified as a space which could serve as a much needed space for staff to have a break while also helping the trust meet other Green Plan objectives.

Stuart Lane, Sustainability and Carbon Manager at University Hospitals Dorset said “This project builds upon the Trust’s biodiversity and greenspace efforts, creating new micro habitats including a bug hotel. Specially selected plants also help to improve air quality by removing pollution. The project avoided high embodied carbon choices where possible via the use of natural materials and recycling. The old patio slabs were re-conditioned and reset and much needed wind breaks have been created with wooden batten fencing and shrubs. As with other works, we have been mindful to employ local suppliers. New sustainable outdoor furniture manufactured in Poole and made from recycled bottle tops has been provided, including the addition of two wheelchair accessible picnic tables. The old furniture will be repurposed in other outdoor spaces at the hospital.”

During the pandemic the charity received many generous donations from the Dorset community to support both staff and patients at the hospitals. These, along with grants from NHS Charities Together, were used to provide immediate supports for our staff including food and hydration, temporary wellbeing areas and safe spaces and communication supports. Some of the funds were also ring fenced to provide longer lasting facilities to improve staff areas across the hospital sites.

As well as physical resources, a large proportion of the funds have been used on providing longer term wellbeing supports including counselling and access to health specialists including psychologists, wellbeing practitioners and physiotherapists. Long Covid rehabilitation programmes have also been funded for the many staff affected.

Further works are planned at the Trust’s new offsite working facility at Yeomans way, where staff have been relocated while building works are on-going at the Royal Bournemouth Hospital. Across the Trust sites at Bournemouth, Poole Christchurch and Alderney, internal staff rest areas will be refurbished and equipment purchased to ensure that there are improved facilities to provide a long-lasting legacy of the wonderful support our community has shown their NHS heroes.

Local hospitals to tackle health inequalities in East Dorset with the help of NHS Charities Together, LiveWell Dorset and Active Dorset

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Wednesday 22 June 2022

University Hospitals Dorset NHS Charity has been awarded a £110,000 grant from NHS Charities Together via Dorset County Hospital Charity in association with Dorset Community Foundation for a 24 month long project to tackle health inequalities through a prevention programme based at the Dorset Health Village in partnership with Active Dorset.

Dorset Health Village is a recently created Outpatient assessment clinic based on the top floor of Beales Department Store in the Dolphin Centre, Poole. The clinic is part of University Hospitals Dorset NHS Foundation Trusts’ ‘Think Big’ initiative to address waiting lists and bring diagnostic services closer to the community.

The grant was awarded as part of a £355,000 grant awarded to Dorset through NHS Charities Together’s Community Partnership Grants Programme in recognition of the vital work that voluntary and community groups do to support the work of the NHS. NHS Charities Together is an organisation made up of 240 NHS member charities based within hospitals, mental health trusts, ambulance trusts, community health trusts and health boards across the UK.

The grant will be used to offer support to patients accessing the Dorset Health Village who are experiencing health inequalities including a reduced life span, greater vulnerability to colds and infections and living with certain health conditions.

The funding will enable 3 key elements to be delivered: improving access to healthcare, supporting patients to recover quicker from NHS treatment by supporting them becoming fitter for operations and empowering patients to have a role in their care and supply them with easy tools to improve their quality of life. To achieve this, the programme will include promotion of healthy lifestyles and the importance of health and wellbeing and behaviour change techniques to increase physical activity, promote healthy weight, stopping smoking and reducing drinking.

The total cost of delivering the project is £215,700 with the balance being funded through in kind staff support provided by Active Dorset. The £110,000 grant will be used to fund a range of items which will enable the success of the programme including a project coordinator, volunteer training, digital health support tools, pedal bikes and lifestyle survey software.

Active Dorset said “The funding received from NHS Charities Together will help us to dedicate time to support this exciting and innovative project, supporting those who need it most. We are looking forward to working with our partners, such as LiveWell Dorset, to embed prevention through providing lifestyle behaviour support into outpatient services in Poole”

Debbie Anderson, head of University Hospitals Dorset NHS Charity said “We are thrilled to be working with NHS Charities Together and Active Dorset to achieve such a fantastic project which will have a significant impact on improving access to health services for our communities”

Dorset Acquired Brain Injury service go the extra mile for their patients at University Hospitals Dorset

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Monday 20 June 2022

The Dorset Acquired Brain Injury (ABI) team at University Hospitals Dorset are hoping to raise £1 for every kilometre they have covered as they virtually travelled the 1,743km from Land’s End to John O’Groats. All donations will help them to provide their patients with activities and experiences that will further their recovery and make their stay on the unit as enjoyable as possible.

The team and their patients have covered and exceeded the kilometres by running, cycling, walking, and swimming whilst patients completed their distances in therapy sessions on a static cycling device called a MotoMed.  They have covered a distance of 1942.61km in 3 months.

The ABI unit provides specialist rehabilitation for patients from across the region who have suffered a brain injury such as a severe stroke. The money raised in this challenge will enhance each patient’s stay on the ward through trips out, music therapy, supplies for activity group such as crafts and ingredients for cooking. The opportunity to use these resources greatly improves the patient’s experience during their stay in hospital as well as their quality of life and that of their families. The activities also further patient rehabilitation and, alongside therapy sessions, help to prepare them for life outside of the ward.

Patient Hayden said “On 29 April last year, I suffered a Brain Stem Stroke which rendered me completely paralysed except for my eyes. I underwent intensive therapy with the help of staff on the Portland Ward at Poole Hospital. In house therapists helped me to learn to walk, talk and eat again and after around 8 months I was ready for discharge.  [I have been able to] contribute towards the therapy team’s fundraising effort on behalf of the ward which has done so much for me.”

Speech and Language Therapist Genevieve Huntley and Physiotherapist Kate Osborne said “Our dedicated team of therapists from the Dorset Acquired Brain Injury Service are raising money to supplement rehabilitation opportunities, which will benefit the complex needs of the patients in our service. We hope to use the money to increase wellbeing during lengthy admissions and to enable patients to have enjoyable experiences that also further their recovery.”

You can donate to help the team achieve their fundraising target here.