Wyevale Garden Centres employee, Linda Facey, whose mum and niece were cared for by Marie Curie Nurses, said: "No one knows what it is like caring for a loved one who is dying until it happens to them and what the Marie Curie Nurses do is amazing. It makes so much difference having this specialist support and meant we could get some rest when we were at our most tired, and we could go home to our families for the night knowing our loved ones were in safe hands.
"I jumped at the chance of raising funds for Marie Curie after we chose them to be our charity partner in the staff vote. It is fantastic how much we have raised over the last two years. Marie Curie has been there for my family when we needed them most and we are so appreciative. I still continue to support the fundraising at Wyevale Garden Centres as I know it will ensure that more families get the vital help my family did."
The money has been raised in a variety of ways such as £274,000 raised via a 25p donation from entrance fees to the children’s play area, £90,000 raised from donating 10 percent from certain of products as well as playing an active role in Marie Curie’s flagship fundraising campaign each March, the Great Daffodil Appeal, which this year totalled £70,000.
Wyevale Garden Centres’ will be brewing up for Marie Curie’s Blooming Great Tea Party between 20-29 June. All centres with a restaurant or café will also be donating 20p from every hot drink sold over the weekend of 25/26 June as part of the event with the aim of raising £10,000.
Jude Bridge, Marie Curie’s Director of Marketing, Fundraising & Public Affairs, said: "We believe everyone living with a terminal illness should get the care and support they need to get the most from the time they have left. We want to provide the right nursing care and support to help them stay at home, which is where people want to be, surrounded by the things they love. For many people that includes their gardens which they have cherished and nurtured over the years, and can bring them comfort through happy memories.
"It’s tremendous that our partnership with Wyevale Garden Centres has raised £750,000 and the money raised will make a real difference in enabling the charity to help even more people, like Linda’s family, at a time when they need us the most. We all look forward to our successful partnership continuing and having such a lasting impact on people across the UK."
Stephen Murphy, Chair of Wyevale Garden Centres, said: "It is a fantastic achievement by our colleagues and customers who have helped raise an incredible £750,000 for our charity partner over the last two years – reaching our target more than a year early. The money can help fund over 37,500 hours of Marie Curie Nurses who support people with a terminal illness and their families.
"We have set ourselves a new aim of reaching £1 million for the charity and I know that we can count on everyone at Wyevale Garden Centres to step up to the challenge and do everything possible to support this amazing cause."