A WELSH charity has almost reached its £1m target to refurbish its hospice in the Vale of Glamorgan. 

Tŷ Hafan opened its doors 22 years ago and has been a lifeline for children with life-limiting conditions and their families ever since. 

After more than two decades of being used 365 days a year and providing essential around-the-clock care to more than 1,000 children and families in Wales, including 60 in the Vale of Glamorgan, Tŷ Hafan’s hospice in Sully needed essential refurbishment to ensure that it can continue to help families for the next 20 years and beyond.  

As well as providing a more bright and cheerful ‘beach hut’ theme throughout which fits with our peaceful location on the Bristol Channel, Tŷ Hafan’s £1m fit for the future refurbishment programme includes essential clinical adaptations to the hospice, which has remained open and operational for crisis and end of life care throughout the pandemic. 

Key features include infection-control flooring, optimising space from top to bottom, providing more purpose-built space for nurses to prepare medicines for children, and ensuring facilities are as accessible as possible for children with various complex conditions. 

Mum Becca and Harley, seven, from Llanelli, benefited from their first stay at Tŷ Hafan last summer during the early months of the pandemic. 

Barry And District News: Becca with Harley, seven, from Llanelli, who first stayed at Tŷ Hafan’s hospice in Sully in the summer of 2020. Becca with Harley, seven, from Llanelli, who first stayed at Tŷ Hafan’s hospice in Sully in the summer of 2020.

Harley has Adenylosuccinase deficiency (ADSL), a rare, complex and progressive disorder which also means that Harley is at high risk of sudden death through epilepsy. 

Becca said: “I never thought Tŷ Hafan was right for us because I thought it was for end of life only and that wasn’t us. But when we went to the hospice to stay, it gave the doctors a chance to see what was going on.

“All the staff were amazing. I wasn’t ready to leave Harley, I’m still not, so I stayed with him the whole time, but I saw other children and was amazed at how the staff were with the kids. I’ve never met such nice people. The one time I left him was to go for a shower for an hour. I’ve never done that before, but I felt able to as I knew he was being looked after.” 

With just a few weeks left until their appeal closes, Tŷ Hafan CEO Maria Timon Samra, said: “In January 2020, just before the world - and our charity - was blighted by the Covid-19 pandemic, Tŷ Hafan launched a much needed £1m project to upgrade our children’s hospice facility in Wales.

Barry And District News: Maria Timon SamraMaria Timon Samra

“Against all the odds, and thanks to the generosity of our loyal local, national and international supporters, we are now in the final stages of this refurbishment.  

“One month ago we updated our stakeholders on Tŷ Hafan’s ‘fit for the future’ fundraising appeal and at that point we were £170k short of our £1m target. 

“Today, with just a few weeks to go until our appeal closes, we have nearly reached our £1m target. 

“So we’re asking our supporters to show their love for Tŷ Hafan once more and to give whatever they can afford to help us over the finish line. 

"Every penny will make a huge difference to the unfairly difficult lives of the children and families whom we support with much needed respite, crisis and end-of-life care.” 

For more information about Tŷ Hafan’s appeal, to make a donation and to watch a video showing the progress of the fit for the future refurbishment project, voiced by Director of Care Deborah Ho, go to: www.tyhafan.org/fitforfuture. 

Hundreds of individuals, groups, businesses and organisations have donated generously to Tŷ Hafan fit for the future appeal, including Circle It, Admiral Group raised £10,000, Taylor Wimpey pleged £12,000 and three Machen teenagers Ben, Lewis and Ollie raised more than £3,000.