Patrons in South Tyneside prove every penny counts with £1,000 charity donation

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Pub-goers have proved that every penny counts after raising £1,000 for a South Tyneside charity for the third time.

Regulars at the Vigilant Inn, in South Shields, are invited to donate 1p every time they buy a pint.

This is a really novel but highly effective way to raise funds for your local hospice, and what an amazing result.

Colin Powell, community fundraiser at St Clare’s Hospice

And for the third time in a row, that collection of change has generated £1,000 for St Clare’s Hospice in Jarrow.

Colin Powell, community fundraiser at the Primrose Terrace hospice, said. “This is a really novel but highly effective way to raise funds for your local hospice, and what an amazing result.

“We are all really delighted at this donation, and in these tough times, it just shows the result a small donation can add up to.”

Steve Tomkins, manager of the Sunderland Road pub, revealed that the idea was suggested to him by its owner, Brian Campbell.

He said: “It was when the Chancellor, George Osborne, took a penny off the beer duty, and we thought our customers would be happy to donate that penny to such a worthy charity as St Clare’s Hospice. It has just become normal practice.

“We even have a jar on the bar filled with pennies, and if a patron can guess how many pennies are in the jar, they can win a couple of free pints.”

Each year, the hospice faces the challenge of finding £1.4m to provide the specialist care it gives free of charge to those in the community with a life-limiting illness.

St Clare’s Hospice provides care for adults south of the Tyne from areas including South Shields, Jarrow, Hebburn, Boldon, Gateshead and parts of Sunderland.

As well as providing specialist palliative care, it also offers physiotherapy, bereavement counselling, spiritual care, complementary therapy and a lymphoedema clinic.

It follows a holistic approach intended to address not just physical symptoms, but also spiritual and emotional needs.

The charity, founded in 1987, relies on donations from the community to help cover its running costs of about £2m a year.

Of that, 30 per cent is provided by the National Health Service, leaving the hospice to find £1.4m itself, which works out at £3,835 a day.

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