A Haverhill woman who has first-hand experience of hospice care has donned her pyjamas to help St Nicholas Hospice Care to launch its 2014 Girls Night Out fundraiser.
The hospice’s annual Girls Night Out moonlight walk for women raises thousands of pounds for the charity thanks to its participants, who wear nightwear, trainers and flashing bunny ears to walk 11.2 or six-miles around Bury St Edmunds.
Denise Griffin, 58, of Haverhill, (pictured 2nd right) took part in Girls Night Out last year when she was pushed around the course in a wheelchair by Hospice staff Angela Jiggins and Gill Austin.
“It was painful taking part last September!” said Denise. “I am not going to lie. I held on to the wheelchair for dear life. Angela and Gill really went for it and all I could do was hold on. I had a bag of sweets and a banana, but I never opened the sweets or touched the fruit the whole way round.”
Denise has secondary bone cancer. She visits the hospice regularly for acupuncture treatments from physiotherapist Angela Jiggins and reflexology from Pam Currie, complementary therapies team leader.
“They really help me,” she said. “The reflexology is good for when you’re getting stressed with your daily life. It rebalances you so you feel more relaxed. The acupuncture is good for pain relief.
“Girls Night Out is for a great cause. It raises awareness of what the Hospice does, as well as raising funds. It raises money, which is what it’s all about.”
In 2013 1,020 women took part in Girls Night Out, raising more than £115,000 for the hospice.
This year, organisers hope to recruit even more women willing to join the town’s biggest party on Saturday,, September 13.
Jenny Baskett, hospice events and challenges fundraiser, said: “We are aiming to make this year’s walk even bigger and better. To do that, we are appealing for women to sign up for the walk, bring their friends and family and, of course, be ready for a party.”
Registration is open now, with an early sign-up offer of £10 per person valid until 31 May (£15 registration from 1 June). To sign up, go to www.stnicholashospicecare.org.uk or pick up an application form at any of the hospice’s charity shops.