Compton's Light Up A Life campaign returns

Compton Care’s Light Up A Life event has returned, with more than 300 people reflecting on the memories of loved ones.

Marie White, Jenny Warren and Tricia Evans with the tree
Marie White, Jenny Warren and Tricia Evans with the tree

The Christmas event, which has been taking place for more than 20 years, gives people an opportunity to remember those they have lost.

It marks a welcome return after the charity went virtual with its programming last year due to the pandemic.

For the first time, supporters were invited to attend on a drop-in basis in order to aid social distancing.

But the centrepiece – the 18ft Christmas tree adorned with its gently twinkling lights – was as striking as ever.

The event, sponsored by Cargill, was launched with a special ceremony. Each light of the tree represents the life of a loved one sadly no longer with us but fondly remembered, particularly at this time of year, and as usual the proud spruce provides a natural focal point for visitors to gather around.

The event also saw supporters taking part in art and crafts activities led by the charity’s spiritual care team.

The tree at Compton Hall

Those attending were encouraged to make unique candle holders and choose a leaf they found in the Garden of Reflection to decorate and add to an in-memory collage to be displayed at the site.

For others, simply being in the peaceful environment at Compton Hall in Wolverhampton, surrounded by others who were also reflecting on treasured memories, was enough. Many chose to light a candle, a small but heartfelt tribute to someone special.

The Book of Remembrance, featuring dedications made by supporters ahead of the event, was also on display.

Compton Care has launched Light Up A Life for Christmas

Individual-giving fundraiser Georgina Grainger said that this year’s event was a success.

“It was lovely to welcome our local community back to Light Up A Life, and wonderful to see so many of our supporters at Compton Hall, gathering together to share memories and celebrate the lives of their loved ones,” she said.

“Support of the Light Up A Life appeal has been fantastic this year, with lots of money raised which will help us enormously in caring for our patients and their families over the festive period – our heartfelt thanks to everyone who has donated. We’d also like to say a big thank you to Cargill for sponsoring this year’s event, and hope that all of our supporters have a peaceful Christmas.”

A still from the Compton Care Christmas video

Last year’s Light Up A Life video was so well received that the charity decided to produce another one this year to accompany the event.

It is led by Marie White, the team leader for the charity’s Living Well Service, which provides a variety of workshops, activities and groups to help patients continue to live actively and independently.

The video will feature musical performances from local schools and elements from the afternoon at Compton Hall, and staff from the spiritual care team also share some words of comfort.

The film will be available to view on Compton’s website from next week.

There is still time to donate to Compton’s Christmas campaign, and there are a variety of ways in which supporters can get involved.

For more information visit comptoncare.org.uk/Christmas

You can also call Compton Care on 0300 323 0250.

Campaign that highlights work to help patients and families

This year’s Christmas campaign aims to ‘Make This Christmas Matter’ for Compton patients and their families.

This means funding vital services so that those being cared for in the local community or at Compton Hall can enjoy the best Christmas possible.

The messaging behind this year’s campaign is also designed to prompt supporters to consider what they would do if this Christmas was their last – what would really matter to them if it was?

Compton Care is well known for the excellent care delivered on its inpatient unit, but the vast majority of the people that Compton cares for are supported to stay in their own home or chosen place of care.

It is important for patients to be in familiar surrounding and around home comforts, which is why Compton doctors, nurses and healthcare assistants bring their expertise to patients’ doors, doing everything possible to ensure that families receive care where it suits them best.

Compton also connects patients and carers, as well as those who are bereaved, through various virtual and face-to-face groups.

Being diagnosed with or caring for someone with an incurable condition can be a life-changing experience. And although there’s no right or wrong way to deal with this kind of event, it can be extremely comforting to connect with others who share similar experiences.

When someone is diagnosed with an incurable condition there is a lot to consider, including finances, housing and legal matters. Compton’s team of social workers offer practical advice as well as emotional support.

Perhaps most importantly, Compton offers independence.

Its Living Well service gives patients the tools, encouragement and support to take charge of their lives and their care.

Through workshops, talks, and activities on topics such as nutrition, breathlessness, anxiety and stress management and many other topics, patients are equipped with the knowledge and support to be able to continue to live independently for as long as possible.

Many Compton patients have described being diagnosed with an incurable illness like being under a constant rain cloud, but say that Compton offers moments of reprieve from the storm.

Compton cannot stop the rain, but it can effectively wrap its arms around the families under its care, offering them compassion, support and shelter when they need it most.

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