Cipriani, Wade, Bassett and Harris surprise families at Zoes Place
Wasps players have thrown their support behind a fundraising appeal for a charity that provides end-of-life care to babies and young children.
Zoë’s Place Baby Hospice in Ash Green, Coventry are appealing for £80,000 to operate to their full potential – the hospice has six cot beds but due to a lack of funding only four cot beds are currently open.
To help raise awareness of the hospice’s plight, Wasps players Danny Cipriani, Christian Wade, Ben Harris and Josh Bassett paid a visit to Zoe’s Place.
The players were taken on a tour of the facilities – which includes a light sensory room, soft play area and an outdoor garden – before meeting some children and their families. The quartet also wrote their own Christmas wishes to the children on their departure.
Danny Cipriani said: “There are many different things going on in the world right now, but hopefully through the club’s following and our own personal following we can help to raise awareness of the work that the hospice does to help these children and their families.
“Helping the parents is just as important as helping the children as they have to look after them and hope that they can move on to live fruitful lives.
“The hospice is doing a great job but it needs help. Let’s get them back up to operating at six beds, and if possible, even more.”
Zoë’s Place Baby Hospice opened in 2011, and provides palliative, respite and end of life care to babies and infants aged from birth to five years suffering from life-limiting or life-threatening conditions.
The hospice needs around £1.4 million a year to keep running and has cared for more than 80 children since its opening in July 2011.
Muna Chauhan is the corporate manager at Zoë’s Place Baby Hospice in Ash Green, and is leading the hospice’s fundraising drive.
She added: “It was fantastic to see some of rugby’s well-known names supporting our fundraising drive.
“The majority of care we give at Zoë’s Place is respite care, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
“Looking after a poorly child takes its toll, and the care we provide allows parents and carers a chance to recharge their batteries or spend time with their other children.
“Our nurses are doing a great job at trying to support as many children and families as possible, but if we can attract some extra funds, then we can help more families, more regularly.
“We rely on donations to keep this vital service alive and it is thanks to the generous public that the hospice has made it into its sixth year.”
To donate to Zoë’s Place Baby Hospice please visit: https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/wasps-rugbyclub
Bucket collections will also be held in aid of Zoe's Place at Wasps Christmas fixture against Gloucester, on Saturday 23rd December, kick off 3pm.
Please give generously if you are able. Your support can make a huge difference to families experiencing the toughest of challenges imagineable this Christmas.
Photo: From left, Danny Cipriani, Elaine Jakeman with baby James, Josh Bassett, Ben Harris, Claire Baines with baby Joel, Christian Wade