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Shoreham Vehicle Auctions and local dealers raise £25,000 for Sussex children’s hospice

Shoreham Vehicle Auctions (SVA) has raised more than £25,000 for Chestnut Tree House (CTH) children’s hospice, in Sussex, at its 2020 charity auction.

The auction firm originally pledged to raise £10,000 for the charity, but south coast motor traders including Frosts4Cars, Yeomans, and Tates all donated cars, while local independent dealers also made pledges on care packages, in excess of expectations.

All monies raised directly fund end-of-life care and support for children and young adults.

Catherine Stone, SVA’s business development, said: “This was our 10th year of supporting Chestnut Tree House, and despite extremely challenging circumstances for all, we weren’t about to abandon our goals. We were blown away by the support which has been shown to CTH in its hour of need.

“We were pleased to be able to put our skills of conducting remote auctions to use at a time when needed the most and truly could not have asked for any more amazing support. Surpassing £25,000 during such a challenging year really does highlight the generosity and resilience of the automotive trade.”

Held online due to Lockdown 2.0 restrictions, the charity auction saw dealers pledge 60 hours of hydrotherapy, 42 sessions of a multi-sensory experience and 10 hours of care at CTH.

It has been estimated that charities across the UK faced a £12.4bn shortfall in income during 2020 with most fundraising opportunities cancelled throughout the year.

Sarah Colbourne, head of fundraising at CTH, said: “On behalf of everyone at Chestnut Tree House, I’d like to say a big thank you to everyone at Shoreham Vehicle Auctions for raising an incredible £25,000 – more than enough to pay for three days of care at Chestnut Tree House – where families will receive specialist care and symptom management from our nursing team and, sadly, end of life care if it is needed.

“The pandemic has had a huge impact on our funding, as it has done on all charities – our fundraising income dropped by 70% when we had to close all our shops and all events were postponed or cancelled. Things are starting to improve now, but we still need our community’s support. Without people like SVA and those who supported their efforts, hospice care wouldn’t be possible. Thank you.”

Having first opened its doors in 2003, CTH currently cares for around 300 children and young people with life-shortening conditions, both at the hospice and in families’ own homes. The hospice offers several types of support, including respite breaks and end of life care, and psychological and bereavement support.

CTH care services cost in-excess of £4.6m each year. The hospice relies heavily on the generosity, help and support of local people and businesses, including the help received from the south coast motor trade.

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