Skanda Vale Hospice is a secular project run by the Skanda Vale multi-faith monastic order. We are a Charitable Incorporated Organisation registered with the Charity Commission, number 1166180.
The charity is administered by a board of trustees – half of which are drawn from the resident monastic community, the other half from a cross section of lay community. Our trustees are very down to earth, bringing a wide range of skills from business, creative, legal, medical and family backgrounds.
Our volunteer based approach means our running costs are a fraction of similar sized palliative care organisations, so we can invest more into caring for our service users.
Skanda Vale Hospice is a secular project. We are not on a mission to convert people – we accept everyone as they are, without judgement or prejudice.
Our service shows no preference or tailoring, even in a subtle way, to people with a religious outlook. It is for everybody, and we will go to any length to make sure that this is clearly presented, delivered and experienced.
Our accounts are independently audited and submitted to the Charity Commission on an annual basis. We have a 100% record for on-time submissions.
We operate a strict internal financial control policy, which also forms part of our annual audit. We have developed the hospice service as a restricted fund within the charity. All income and expenditure for the hospice is contained within that fund, and all purchases are held as restricted assets.
All online transfers to third parties have dual control. All transactions are set up by the director of finance and independently authorised by an agreed signatory. Likewise, all our cheques must be signed by two authorised signatories.
We live well within our means – neither Skanda Vale monastery, nor the hospice have ever been in debt or borrowed money. We own the freehold on all our properties and have no mortgages. Our infrastructure has been carefully and sustainably developed, in response to public demand.
We do not use professional paid fundraisers – all our fundraising is done by experienced volunteers. Our successful £500k Big Lottery grant application was also written entirely by volunteers.
We feel this approach works best for our supporters and patients. Around 94p in every £1 donated to the hospice goes directly to developing our service and facilities.
We live in a beautiful part of the world and none of us want the hospice to leave a dirty footprint on it! Here are some of the measures we are taking to save money and reduce our environmental impact:
- Our volunteers travel to work each day using our own bio-diesel powered car sharing scheme.
- We reduce our carbon emissions and energy costs by heating the hospice using wood chips from our own nearby forest.
- We installed good quality external insulation on our old stone buildings to reduce heat loss at the hospice.
Most of our senior staff, including our financial director and hospice manager work full time as volunteers. Our palliative care nurses are paid a fair living wage. We believe that having a happy, motivated team is the only way to provide first class care for our service users.
We have calculated that each of our inpatient hospice beds will cost £160 per day to run. This is compared to £321 per bed per day in a typical hospice, or £425 in hospital.
Statistics quoted from A time and a place – Sue Ryder report
We are currently open for day care on Tuesdays and Fridays from 10am til 3pm.
We are working toward being open 24/7 for inpatient respite and end of life care. Currently we offer planned sessions of respite each month of up to 11 days in duration.
All our services are offered completely free of charge to anyone over the age of 18 who has been diagnosed with a life-limiting illness. We can care for patients with complex and challenging needs.
All of our services are offered completely free of charge. Nobody will mention money to you, or your family. If you would like to donate, you are of course very welcome – hospice care is expensive and we have no NHS or government grant. All of our running costs are met through donations and our fundraising events.
Anyone can make a referral. It could be the patient, a carer, or a family member, but we must have full consent from a GP, consultant or nurse before we can begin.
We encourage you to make a referral as soon after diagnosis as possible. Hospice aren’t just places to go to die.
Our service can help make a dramatic improvement in the ability of patients and their families to cope with challenging circumstances. The earlier a patient is referred, the more chance we have to help.
We have no catchment area – there are no geographical restrictions. Most of our patients come from the three counties of Carmarthenshire, Ceredigion and Pembrokeshire as travelling can become an issue from further afield.
We have highly experienced palliative nurses providing clinical care during our inpatient respite sessions. There is no handover of care – our patient’s specialist medical and primary care teams remain the lead professionals.
Absolutely not! We go to great lengths to ensure that everyone, regardless of their age, gender, culture or belief is made to feel equally welcome. We will protect our patients and their families from any individual or organisation with an unwanted evangelical agenda.
We are an independent charity with no government grant, funded through donations and fundraising events. So far we have raised over £1.75 million (including a grant of £500k from the Big Lottery Fund) towards our new inpatient hospice. This sum was raised on top of our daily running costs, so we have a strong track record of good financial management.
As much as we would like to offer our services to people under the age of 18, children often have very specific needs that we are currently unable to meet. Have a look at Ty Hafan for specialist children’s hospice care.
We’re an independent hospice working closely with specialist teams, GPs, social services and other providers in our region.
As a member of the Hywel Dda Palliative Care Strategy Group, all of our services are developed with a broad regional overview, so we complement, not compete with other services, facilitating a seamless transfer of care between providers.
Typically we tend to work with people with troubling physical and/or emotional issues, who generally have a few months or years to live.
Our holistic care services promote physical, practical, emotional, social and spiritual wellbeing, boosting confidence and personal strength.