The National Gardens Scheme, the QNI’s most important funder, has announced that it will donate £200,000 to the charity in 2013. The funds are part of the £2.2m that the NGS raised last year from the thousands of gardens that opened for charity in England and Wales, and which supports a number of nursing and caring charities.
The funding that the QNI receives from The National Gardens Scheme is more essential than ever in enabling us to carry out our charitable functions. In 2013, the QNI is working to develop our relationship with the NGS on a more regional basis, encouraging nurses to visit gardens that are local to them.
Crystal Oldman, chief executive of the QNI said, ‘This is a tremendous donation that will have a real impact on the work that the QNI is able to do in the coming year to help patients who need nursing care at home or in the community.
‘We live in an era where increasingly, healthcare is delivered in people’s homes and communities, rather than in hospital. People are living longer, often with complex, long term conditions. When they are admitted to hospital, they are frequently discharged very quickly.
‘To enable people to live safe, comfortable and independent lives at home, they often need the support of qualified and skilled community nurses. However, the number of qualified district nurses has been falling for more than a decade, just when we need them most. The QNI is campaigning to raise awareness of the vital role that these nurses play, at a time when healthcare reform is moving faster than ever.
‘The support we receive from The NGS is absolutely vital to every area of our work. I would like to thank every single NGS garden owner, whose hard work helps us to improve care for so many of the most vulnerable people in society.’
The Institute was originally founded in 1887 to organise the training of district nurses, who brought healthcare to people in their own homes to those who could not afford to pay for it. The Institute was always in need of funds, and in 1926 one of its Council members, Elsie Wagg, came up with the idea of opening private gardens for charity and charging the public a shilling to enter. The National Gardens Scheme was born. In 1980 The NGS became an independent charitable trust, but the funding that it gives to the QNI each year remains indispensible.