A £60,000 appeal to improve blood taking services at St Cross has been launched.
The Friends hope to hit their target and get the new-look Phlebotomy Service unveiled during its Diamond Jubilee next year.
It is the most used service at the hospital, but with several thousand patients every month it has been under pressure for some time with people often queuing outside a packed waiting room.
The appeal will fund its relocation into the heart of the Rainsbrook Wing, double its capacity and create its own dedicated access from what is currently the volunteers’ car park.
Friends chairman Heather Green said: “This is the first time in recent years that we have launched an appeal.
“We will be seeking the support of local business as well as the general public and the many clubs and societies who have kindly nominated us as their charity of the year.”
The appeal was launched on Monday at the Friends’ AGM during which members celebrated their recent nominations in the Pride of Rugby Awards and more notably their Queen’s Award for Voluntary Services – the equivalent of an MBE.
Mayor Ramesh Srivastava, who last week announced the Friends as his charity of his year in office, was there to Mary Lock a photograph of her giving Princess Alexandra a bouquet during the recently opening ceremony of the rehabilitation centre, which was partly funded by the group.
He made presentations to Edie Freeman who was shortlisted for the Volunteer Long Service Award at the Pride of Rugby Awards after 50 years of support and Elizabeth McKinely, who was given an Honorary Life Membership after 15 years as a volunteer.
David Moon, chief strategy officer at University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire NHS Trust, told the meeting: “St Cross is a vital part of the trust and is much loved by the patients, staff and community in Rugby.
“The trust will continue to work with the Friends to continue to improve services to the patients we serve.”
Hospital manager Juliet Starkey and Friends’ chairman Heather Green launch the appeal. Picture by Bob Mercer.
Mayor Ramesh Srivastava with Friends’ volunteers Edie Freeman, Mary Lock and Elizabeth McKinley. Picture by Bob Mercer.