Kids' hospice plea in two-pronged charge

Virgo Health PR and The Policy Partnership are backing a major campaign aiming to crank up the pressure on the Government to provide more funding for children's hospices.

The campaign - which has the slogan ‘Fair Play for Children's Hospices' - is being orchestrated by chairman Neil Bruce Copp OBE, a philanthropist.

It is backed by the Association of Children's Hospices (ACH), the long-established national voice for the UK's 39 children's hospices, which house and support those who are going to die in childhood, and their families.

In England, children's hospices receive an average of 2.7 per cent of their funding from the government, and many face a daily fundraising struggle to sustain crucial public donations.

Fair Play's aim is greater long-term sustained funding for the hospices from current and future governments.

Virgo deputy managing director Caroline Fielding and The Policy Partnership partner Claire Davidson are working in tandem on the campaign; the former on consumer comms, the latter on public affairs.

Work so far has included the development of a website - fairplayforchildren.org.uk - while a major ‘consumer lobbying' drive is on the cards. The agencies want people to sign an online petition and raise the issue with their local MP.

Earlier this year the Government pledged £27m for children's hospices in England. The ACH called the move a ‘significant step forward'.

Prior to Virgo and The Policy Partnership, the campaign was - very briefly - supported by Ogilvy Healthworld and Shire Health London. The latter two agencies ceased working on the campaign in May.

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