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Hospice's Light Up a Life service to be held virtually again

A Royton-based hospice is inviting the community of Oldham to remember those who are in their thoughts during the festive period.

Dr Kershaw's Hospice is welcoming local residents to remember their loved ones at its annual Light Up a Life service, which is taking place virtually again this year, on Sunday 5 December at 7pm. 

The service offers the community, and those from further afield, the opportunity to remember those who are no longer with us and the difference they made to our lives. 

Grace Carr, Digital Marketing and Events Executive at Dr Kershaw’s, is responsible for organising the virtual Light Up a Life service each year. 

She said: “Our Light Up a Life service is for those who would like to join together with their local community to celebrate the special people who have helped to light up their life. Our annual Light Up a Life service is unique as it allows our community to remember their lost loved ones in a positive way with their participation being not only a symbol of remembrance but a way to show support to those in need in the community during the festive period.” 

The hospice says holding the regular in-person event won't be possible again this year with continuing Covid measures in place, but it wanted to give everyone from Oldham, and the wider community, the opportunity to take part again after the success of last year's virtual service. 

Joanne Sloan, Dr Kershaw's Hospice Chief Executive, said: “We hope that you will join with your family, friends and neighbours to take part in our virtual Light Up a Life service, to remember those who are in your thoughts during the festive period. Although we are unable to hold an in-person event, we are looking forward to next year, when our new landscaped gardens will be complete and we can come together once again for this special event with the community.” 

This year’s virtual service will follow its traditional format, allowing people from all over the borough to make a dedication in the form of a shining light on the dedication tree which is situated within the hospice grounds to remember their loved ones no matter their faith, culture or connection to the hospice.

The virtual service will include multi-faith readings, performances from the hospice’s very own choir - The Dr Kershaw’s Crooners, Hospice Trustee Peter Wakefield, St Anne’s Primary School and the ceremonial lighting of the Hospice Remembrance Tree. 

Grace explains: “When you make a dedication, a light will be dedicated in memory of your loved one on our Light Up a Life dedication tree, their name will also be included on-screen during our online service, and will be available to view in our Book of Remembrance on our Hospice website.”

For people's dedicated name to be included in the hospice’s online Book of Remembrance, dedications must be received by Friday 19 November. 

Those who make a donation to the hospice will also receive a Light Up a Life at Home Pack, which includes a dedication card, instructions on how to view/listen to this years’ service, a cut-out star to hang on your tree at home or any space that holds a special place in your heart and a tea light candle to light during the service in memory of those you hold dear.

There is also the opportunity to purchase a 2021 Light Up a Life commemorative bauble to hang on your tree, for £4.50, available from the hospice’s reception and three hospice shops. 

This year's Light Up a Life service will be available to watch online via the hospice’s Facebook page and YouTube channel. 

Kathryn Harding, the hospice’s Emotional and Bereavement Support Nurse, added: “The Light Up a Life service is a chance to come together as a community to support one another as we remember our loved ones who are no longer with us and celebrate their lives. Your participation enables us to continue to support the people of Oldham to live well with life-limiting illness. We couldn’t do it without you!”

To dedicate a light at the hospice’s 2021 Light Up a Life service, go to www.drkh.org.uk/LightUpaLife, complete a form in one of the three hospice shops, or call the hospice’s Fundraising Team on 0161 624 9984.

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