VISITORS were treated to sneak preview of the upgraded facilities at Francis House Children’s Hospice at a public open day.
Supporters, school groups and businesses got to hear from members of the care team as they were taken on behind-thescenes tours of the facilities.
State-of-the-art technology, on show for the first time included a Snoezelen multi-sensory room, providing soothing ● sounds, tactile experiences and gentle movement.
Colourful bedrooms are equipped with new wardrobes, gaming, televisions and full room cover hoists.
There is a soft play room for children and siblings, and a new home cinema currently under construction.
The children referred to the Didsbury based hospice have a range of conditions.
These include neuromuscular, metabolic and neurological diseases.
Fewer than 10 per cent of the children have cancer-related conditions.
Built in 1991, the home-from-home environment needed additional digital equipment to cater for the growing needs of the children and families it now supports.
David Ireland, chief executive of Francis House said: “Through the generosity of so many people, we have been gradually upgrading the building at Francis House.
“All of this work is being carefully phased to allow the respite care to continue with as little impact on the families as possible.”
Alongside the building work and general maintenance, the hospice care team is being developed with new ● structures to improve emotional and bereavement support and in the near future, developments in the Homecare team.
Francis House supports more than 460 families from across Greater Manchester with a large team of registered nurses, nursery nurses, social workers and therapists.
David said: “Francis House is 26 years old and we still need people to support us just as we did in the early days.
“Each year we rely on public donations to fund 88 per cent of our income.
“We are truly grateful to everyone out there who supports us.”
To find out more about the work of Francis House visit www.francishouse. org.uk.
Sensory room equipment at Francis House
Visitors at the Francis House open day