Express & Star

Dame Julie Walters backs Acorns hospice appeal as fundraising nears £250,000

Black Country-born actress Dame Julie Walters DBE has thrown her support behind a fundraising appeal to save Acorns children's hospice in Walsall from closure.

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Dame Julie Walters is backing the Save Acorns Black Country Hospice Appeal. Photo: Nicky Johnston/Camera Press

The news comes as Acorns revealed that the £2 million fundraising campaign is well on its way to reach the £250,000 mark – less than a month after it was launched on July 19.

It was revealed last month that the centre on Walstead Road, which had been earmarked for closure, had been given a reprieve.

All sorts of fundraising events have been held for Acorns

It will now stay open until April but £2 million needs to be raised if it is to survive beyond next spring.

How you can donate:

  • Text ACORNS5 to 70025 to donate £5*

  • Text ACORNS10 to 70025 to donate £10*

  • Phone: 01564 825 037

  • *With texts you will be charged your donation, plus your standard network rate. Acorns receives at least 98 per cent of your donation as it will incur a two per cent admin charge for this service. By texting, you are agreeing for Acorns to phone or text you to tell you about our work and how you can help. If you wish to donate and not hear from Acorns again, text ACORNS5 NO to 70025. For more information call 01564 825 037. Acorns Children’s Hospice registered charity no: 700859.

The Save Acorns Black Country Hospice Appeal, which is being backed by the Express & Star, has so far raised £219,624.14 since its launch last month.

Harry Potter and Billy Elliot actress Dame Julie Walters is now urging people in the Black Country and Birmingham to play their part in helping to save the hospice from closure.

She said: "Children's hospices are incredible places that help families going through the toughest times.

Julie Walters was born in Smethwick

"It's clear just how much Acorns in the Black Country means to all the families who depend on its services and to the amazing staff and volunteers for whom it's not just a place of work but more like an extended family.

"I am delighted to back the campaign to help safeguard the hospice’s future and hope that everyone in Birmingham and the Black Country will do their bit, whether it's making a donation or doing something daft or daring to raise money.”

Dame Julie Walters joins comedian Jasper Carrott, This Morning presenter Alison Hammond, Michelin-star TV chef Glynn Purnell and Black Sabbath guitarist Tony Iommi in backing the campaign.

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People across the Black Country and beyond are now being urged to keep the momentum going and continue supporting the campaign.

Donating is easy and can be done in seconds by texting Acorns5 or Acorns10 to 70025 to give either £5 or £10.

Acorns chief executive Toby Porter added: "The response we have seen from the local community has been awe-inspiring and the total raised towards the appeal so far is phenomenal.

"Every single person who has donated or fundraised, whether large or small, on behalf of all the Black Country families who use Acorns, should be incredibly proud.

Toby Porter, Acorns chief executive

"The response over the first month shows we can reach our £2m goal, if the incredible support we have had is sustained.

“We are also so grateful to Dame Julie Walters for giving her backing to this very important cause and for her recognition of the families in our region who rely on our services.

"There is still a long way to go but I hope local people and businesses are inspired to join the Appeal and help save our Black Country hospice.”

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