Hospices across North Wales have shared their concerns as the effects of the cost of living crisis continue to squeeze the charities. 

The rising cost of fuel, energy bills and food bills is having a major effect on families across the UK.

Charities National Energy Action and the Food Foundation warned that the number of households in fuel poverty has increased from 4.5 million a year ago to 6.7 million now.

However, this strain is also impacting charities that rely heavily on fundraising and donations.

This includes hospices that provide care and support to those who face the end stages of a terminal illness as well as their families. 

Nightingale House, a hospice based in Wrexham, has seen a 36% drop in donations since the start of 2022 as well as a dip in memberships to their weekly lottery. 

READ MORE: Wrexham: Cost of living crisis hits Nightingale House Hospice

Laura Parry, director of Income Generation said: “Families are facing financial struggles and we wholeheartedly understand that there are shifting priorities for numerous supporters. We are very grateful of all the support we continue to receive from the local community. We hope that the public will continue to help whenever they are able.”

St Kentigern Hospice based in St Asaph is also concerned how the impacts of the cost of living crisis on families will affect the hospice. 

A spokesperson at the hospice said: "Over 70% of our income is derived from donations and we know that some organisations are suffering 'pandemic-level' drops in their donations. 

"Inflation is on everyone's minds and price increases cause anxiety when people don't know if they will be able to pay their bills or even put food on the table. We know cash donations will inevitably fall, as will participation in fundraising events, as people are forced to cut back on their discretionary spending.

"We are at the same time, feeling the pinch of the rise in our running costs. In the kitchen for example, most food supplies are more expensive than a few months ago. 

"Another major concern is for our staff. Wages are not reflecting the current cost of living hikes, and fuel prices mean that some staff members who live out of the immediate area are wondering how they will afford to come to work. We are committed to reviewing the situation closely on an ongoing basis."

Hope House, based in Oswestry and Ty Gobaith, in Conwy, Children's Hospices welcomed the Governments announcement in the Mini-Budget to address the "rising cost of energy bills for households, businesses and charitable organisations" said Chief Executive Andy Goldsmith.

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The hospice supports children living with terminal illness and their families across Cheshire, Shropshire, Mid and North Wales. 

Mr Goldsmith added: "However, while freezing average energy bills brought a sense of relief for many, the families that we support are already facing much higher bills because of the additional energy needed to power vital equipment used to care for children with life-threatening conditions. 

“The charity Scope has estimated that families with a disabled child face, on average, extra costs of £581 a month. The impact of recent energy price rises and the overall rise in the cost of living has already increased that figure dramatically. 

The charity called on the government to "explore more ways to directly support those families caring for the most vulnerable children in our communities.”

As the hospices recognise families may be unable to provide financial contributions they are emploring those who can to offer their time as volunteers, or as Nightingale House encourages, to support their local charity shops.

For more information about the Nightingale House hospice website or call 01978 313134.

For more information about Hope House and Ty Gobaith visit here or call 01691 671671/01492 596581.

For more information about St Kentigern Hospice visit here or call 01745 585 221.

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