Duchess of Cornwall to be president of Prospect Hospice
PROSPECT Hospice are celebrating a royal addition to their team after Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, agreed to become the new president of the charity.
The Wroughton-based hospice, which provides end-of-life care to people with terminal or life-threatening conditions in Swindon and north Wiltshire, entertained the Duchess when she visited in January, 2012 to meet patients, volunteers and staff.
Announcing the news, Angela Jordan, Prospect’s chief executive, said: “We are delighted that HRH the Duchess of Cornwall has accepted our invitation to become our president.
“When she came to Prospect Hospice last year we were impressed by her natural empathy for the work we do and she created an immediate rapport with the patients that she spoke with, chatting with them first and foremost as people, rather than as patients.
“We hope that her commitment will enable us to communicate locally and more widely our vision of excellence and choice in end-of-life care for everyone, and the availability of our services within the community we serve.”
Angela introduced the Duchess to the hospice after meeting her as part of her work with another charity.
“It came about after I had been working with a charity she was president of, called the National Osteoperosis Society,” added Angela.
“She was already the patron of two other hospices, and the way she helped those organisations to raise their profile was fantastic.
“I was at an event at Clarence House just after I came into the post at Prospect Hospice, and I told her of my new position and how proud I was of the organisation. I invited her to come and visit, which she did.
“During the visit I watched how she talked to our patients and how they thoroughly enjoyed talking to her and seeing how down to earth she was.
“She also attended a reception of volunteers at the Heart of the Hospice, and she spoke to every single person in that room and shared words with all of them so she understood every aspect of the organisation.
“There was a buzz as she left from people who had been anxious but really enjoyed speaking to her.
“She remarked how much she enjoyed the visit, so I wrote a formal letter asking her to become our president.
“We will now have a meeting to discuss how she can help the hospice, but classically the role will involve visiting the organisation and helping to bring focus on to what we do.
“I think it will help us immensely to raise the awareness of the scope of the work the hospice does.
“Most people think we are just that place down in Wroughton.
“But the vast majority of the care we provide is at home, and it will be that awareness that I want people to understand. I don’t think people are fully aware of all our services.
“Hopefully she can introduce us to people we might not have met in the past who can bring something to the hospice.”
The Duchess is already a supporter of two other charities, Helen and Douglas House in Oxford, and Trinity Hospice in Clapham, London.
A spokesperson for Clarence House said: “Her Royal Highness was very impressed with Prospect Hospice when she visited in 2012, and is delighted to take on their patronage.
“Her Royal Highness is a great supporter of the work that hospices undertake and, having strong links to the area, she is extremely happy to lend her support to such a worthwhile organisation.”