Hens helping at Hospice

A grant of £10,000 from the National Lottery Community Fund means that Alice House Hospice can become a part of the HenPower Project.

Currently in more than 40 care homes, HenPower creatively ‘hengages’ older people in arts activities and hen-keeping to promote health and wellbeing and reduce loneliness.

Care settings currently a part of HenPower include those owned by Akari Care, Gateshead Council, Barchester, Orchard Care, Jewish Care, Brunel Care and the Whiddon Group in Australia.

Rebecca Jobson, Senior Fundraising Manager at the Hospice said, “Keeping Hens and using them as a means to cultivate creativity for patients in Day Hospice and Day Care will combat loneliness, depression as well as improving wellbeing.”

“With loneliness said to be as damaging to our health as smoking 15 cigarettes a day (Holt-Lunstad 2010) HenPower helps vulnerable older people gain a sense of purpose and being part of something worthwhile.”

Trustee, Lorna Jones, meets one of the Henpower Hens

By becoming a HenPower project, Alice House Hospice will get support and advice on how to use hen-keeping to engage patients and their carers, if they wish, in a weekly creative programme led by artists.

Chief Executive Tracy Woodall, “We are so looking forward to welcoming our first hens, and lots of staff and volunteers have come forward to help look after them.  Our aim is to support our patients to be aspirational and we hope that we can not only use the hens to create a wonderful variety of activities for them, but use them as a way of developing relationship with the younger community through junior and high schools.”

The Holistic Wellbeing Centre at Alice House Hospice was host to a Hen Roadshow on 2nd May which saw a number of ‘Hensioners’ and their hens from other care homes come along and meet lots of patients, volunteers, supporters, trustees and staff.

Rebecca Jobson, Senior Manager Fundraising said “The hens stole the show and it was amazing to meet other people who already look after Hens in their care setting and to see the visible benefits that the hens have had on their wellbeing”.

The Henpower project has been made possible with a grant from
the National Lottery Community Fund

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Hartlepool Hospice Ltd (known locally as Alice House Hospice and formerly Hartlepool & District Hospice)
Registered office: Alice House, Wells Avenue, Hartlepool, TS24 9DA.