MEMBERS of the travelling community have raised thousands for a care home that helped a loved one.
The manager of Darlington’s Springfield Care Home was left speechless when she was told residents could enjoy a new lease of life thanks to a donation of more than £6,000.
The significant sum was raised by people from all over the country who visited Darlington on Friday to enjoy a charity night in memory of Lizann Welch.
The popular woman, who died following a battle with Alzheimer’s Disease at the age of 53, was cared for by staff at the home prior to her death.
To thank the team for their support, Ms Welch’s daughters, Sueellen, Elizabeth Ann and Renee organised a mothers and daughters themed charity evening, held at the Engineers Club.
The night helped to boost fundraising already done by the family, resulting in a total of £6,320 being donated to the home.
Ms Sueellen Welch Lowther said: “The last few weeks of my mother’s life was absolutely terrible and we did not know how to look after her properly.
“We didn’t want her to go into a home at first but she came to love being there and the staff were marvellous, we got to know them very well and they even attended her funeral
“The whole community pulled together for the event and it was a brilliant night – my mother would have loved it, she was full of life and always smiling.
“Paula, Joy and Jean came from the home and gave a lovely speech about my mother that was really emotional and got everybody crying.
“We couldn’t believe how much we raised, we’re still in shock.”
Ms Welch Lowther’s uncle, Billy Welch, added: “This has been a good opportunity for our people to give something back to the care home and show how much we appreciated what they did.
“They can use it to give the residents a lot of the simple things that everyone else takes for granted – more days out for example.”
The home’s manager, Gail Carter, said: “What they have done is exceptional – in all of my years in this business, I’ve never known such a large donation.
“Ms Welch’s family were a big part of our home and became part of our extended family until she passed away.
“We cannot thank them enough for what they’ve done, the donation will make a huge difference to our residents’ lives and they have been amazing.“We can use it to take our residents on more day trips, put money towards buying our own minibus or do other things - it will take the pressure off us a lot to fundraise.”
Written By: Joanna Morris