Beacon of Hope

Elizabeth Murphy MBE, Chair and Founder of Beacon of Hope with Professor April McMahon.

Elizabeth Murphy MBE, Chair and Founder of Beacon of Hope with Professor April McMahon.

11 July 2012

Ceredigion hospice care provider, Beacon of Hope, will be the nominated charity of the Vice-Chancellor of Aberystwyth University for 2012/13.

The announcement was made by Professor April McMahon, the University’s Vice-Chancellor on Tuesday 10 July, during the first of this year’s graduation ceremonies.

Established in 2000, Beacon of Hope Hospice Care aims to optimise the quality of life for those who have advanced, incurable and progressive illness, and their families, from diagnosis through death and bereavement.

The service is free, local and immediate for people in Ceredigion and the immediate surrounding area and the Dyfi Valley.

Working from offices in Aberystwyth, Cardigan and Machynlleth it provides dedicated support for patients and their carers so that people can make the most of life in what time they have left.

Professor McMahon said: “It is a privilege to be able to support the excellent work of the Beacon of Hope. As the major employer in mid Wales, we are very much aware of our responsibilities to current and former staff, many of whom will know someone who has benefited from the unstinting support that Beacon of Hope has provided over the years.”

“It is a mark of our appreciation of the dedication of founder Mrs Elizabeth Murphy MBE and everyone associated with the charity that we offer our support for the coming year. We look forward to working with staff at Beacon of Hope to assess how we can provide the most tailored and effective assistance,” she added.

Speaking after the announcement, Beacon of Hope Chair and Founder, Elizabeth Murphy MBE said; “We very much welcome this announcement by the University. The support of such a large institution for a hospice charity such as ourselves is vital and will enable us to continue to develop the services that are so important for those who face such a difficult time.”

“Many hospice charities receive support from large industry. We were lucky to have been support by one of the largest private employers Rachel’s Dairy when the charity was first founded. Unfortunately, there are few large private sector companies based in Ceredigion, the opportunities for funding are limited. So the announcement that the oldest University in Wales is supporting the smallest hospice in Wales is a great boost to us all,” she added.

Alan Axford OBE is the charity’s voluntary Medical Advisor. “Conventional NHS care is very much focused on the patient and not so much on the carers who often provide support in very difficult circumstances.  Their dedication can mean they become socially isolated and this is where the services provided by Beacon of Hope are so valuable, and the support of organisations such as the University so important.”

As the nominated charity, Beacon of Hope has a stand at this week’s graduation ceremonies where they provide information about the services they offer.

Reflecting on the Charity’s philosophy, Elizabeth Murphy added “Our aim is to make the end of life a celebration of the human spirit, not a tragedy to be lamented.”