Show you care this Christmas - all for a good Claus!

Birmingham St Mary’s Hospice is urging people to get into the festive spirit and show they care this Christmas.

The local charity provides free care for over 1,200 patients, 365 days a year including Christmas Day and over the festive period. This year they have a packed programme in the run up to Christmas as part of their ‘#CareatChristmas’ campaign.

From the ‘Jingle Bell Jog’ to ‘Treecycling’ (get your tree collected after Christmas for a small donation), Birmingham St Mary’s Hospice is encouraging locals to get involved in the various festive fundraising activities to raise vital funds to support patients and families in Birmingham and Sandwell living with a terminal illness this festive period.

Hamish Shilliday, Head of Fundraising said, “This year it will cost around £22,000 to run the Hospice on Christmas Day so all donations are crucial in ensuring our patients and families receive the support they need at this time of the year. All the staff try and make it the happiest it can be and we need your help to continue to provide this exceptional care.

“For some of our patients this will be their last Christmas so we want to make sure they can enjoy this special time with their loved ones. Christmas is a time to care and we hope that our ‘Care at Christmas’ campaign will urge people to get involved in our festive fundraising activities. Just £65 could help pay for eight of our patients to receive care at home on Christmas Day and £6 could pay for them to enjoy a festive Christmas dinner- every penny raised really does make a difference.”

Kicking off the campaign in Santa style is the Jingle Bell Jog. Now in its second year, the fun-filled family event returns on Sunday 6th December at Kings Heath Park (11am). Participants can spread some Christmas cheer by completing the 2km fun run in their free Santa suit which is provided for all Jingle Bell Joggers (along with a mince pie at the finish line!). Last year the charity’s first ever Jingle Bell Jog saw 250 Santa’s take part raising over £9,000. Wannabe Santa’s can take part in this year’s run by registering at careatchristmas.org

Locals can also book to get their Christmas tree recycled as part of the ‘Treecycling’ scheme. For a donation, residents can book to have their tree collected from outside their property and recycled at local recycling centres. Over 700 trees were collected last year raising over £8,500 worth of vital funds.

And if none of that fits your Christmas wish list their festive Christmas cards can be bought online or in any of their 13 shops across the region. Choose from a range of 19 festive designs with all proceeds going to the Hospice.

To find out further details on all the festive fundraising activities and how to get involved, visit careatchristmas.org or call 0121 472 1191