Howells Railway Products Ltd, a third generation manufacturer of railway signalling products, is supporting their local children’s hospice in an awareness raising campaign for regular giving.

As a charity Francis House Children’s Hospice relies on the generosity of people from across Greater Manchester to help fund its work providing round the clock care to support the families of children and young people with life-limiting and life-threatening conditions.

The total yearly running cost of Francis House is £4.8 million and out of every £1 spent 89p goes towards charitable work. Services include respite care, homecare, day care, sibling support, parental support, end of life care, emotional and bereavement support.  Francis House has no upper-age limit and once accepted continues to care for young adults into their twenties (even thirties).

More than 625 individuals and businesses currently give on a regular basis to Francis House. This contributes an average of £87,000 (including Gift Aid from UK taxpayers) every year.

Among them is Howells Railway Products Ltd who have been donating to Francis House for more than a quarter of a century. Established in 1947, The business employs 42 people based out of an impressive Art Deco building in Wythenshawe.

The relationship with Francis House began as the result of a talk by Father Thomas Mulheran about the need for a children’s hospice in Manchester. Managing Director, Mike Howells, was so moved that he pledged to support the hospice with donations long into the future.

In addition to raising funds through raffle prizes at the work Christmas party, the company set up a regular monthly donation of £500 that continues to this day.

Mike’s daughter Rebecca Howells and son David Howells are Directors of the company, together with Jennifer Dudley who joined the firm aged 18.

Rebecca said: “It rubbed off on us and because dad was so passionate, we became passionate. Making a regular donation to Francis House is an easy and convenient way to show your support and we are happy knowing that our donation is making a real difference to local children and their families. We will continue to support Francis House and would encourage others to do the same.”

In recognition of Howells outstanding support, Rebecca and Jennifer were presented with a special award on his behalf.

A UK Giving Report by the Charities Aid Foundation (CAF) found that the typical monthly donation remains at £20 – unchanged since 2017. Giving a donation of £500 or more to a single cause would put a donor in the top 1% of givers.

Regular donations made year on year help the charity to save time and money and have a sustained long-term impact on the lives of the children and families that they support.

Rachel Nasiri, fundraising officer of Francis House said: “Donations come to us in a variety of ways from a sporting challenge to a gift made in memory of a loved one. But it’s the regular donations made every month that help us to plan ahead and keep our vital services running.”

With inflation and rising costs, charities like Francis House need help to pay for core running costs and a regular stream of income can help with staff and building costs.

Rachel added: “To Howells and all of our regular givers we are profoundly grateful for your support. You are funding the expansion and development of our services enabling us to meet the growing need for homecare and emotional support.

“If you are considering becoming a regular giver you will be making an ongoing difference to the lives of the children and families that we support. If you are able to do so, please consider setting up a charity direct debit or a standing order and join more than 600 others supporting Francis House on a regular basis.”

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