Message from the Florescu family
When a child is sick everyone in the family is affected. Life-limiting illnesses and trauma place tremendous stress on families who are overwhelmed by grief and responsibility. This can even lead to the abandonment of a sick and suffering child to a state institution or worse. For 30 years now, Hospices of Hope has been dedicated to an interdisciplinary approach to supporting families through their most difficult times – improving their quality of life, alleviating their suffering and giving the family support to cope with some of the most complex physical and emotional challenges.
It was the wish of our late farther, Professor Radu Florescu, that Copaceni, his favorite summer residence as a child, be used to provide a nurturing and vibrant place for children. In 2012, we decided to donate this property to Hospices of Hope to enable them to continue and even increase their pioneering work for marginalized and vulnerable children in Romania.
Philanthropy and giving back, especially in Romania, was very important to Radu Sr. who passed away in 2014. It is our hope that you will join us in completing Copaceni so its unique mission of providing desperately needed services of palliative care and rehabilitative therapy to summer camps for disadvantaged children can be realized.
The immediate challenge we face is the need to raise €1.5 million to renovate five buildings on the four-acre property including a respite centre and a play therapy unit.
There will also be space to train and educate doctors, nurses and social and physical therapists from the region, who will then become multipliers of the work of Hospices of Hope in Romania and neighboring countries.
We invite you to partner with us to make Copaceni a real sanctuary for these children and their families, and we thank you for joining us in this very meaningful initiative.
The Florescu Family
29 years of kept promises
Hospices of Hope has received numerous awards for its outstanding contribution to palliative care development in Romania and Eastern Europe.
In 1992, I established the first hospice charity partner of UK-based Hospices of Hope in Romania – HOSPICE Casa Sperantei – to help introduce hospice care to a poorly served population.
Prior to this, terminally ill patients were simply sent home to die without any support or pain relief.
From small beginnings, Hospices of Hope has become the leading palliative care charity in South East Europe, including partner charities in the Republic of Moldova and Serbia. Approximately 40.000 children and adults have since received the care and support they badly need. The first inpatient hospice for children and adults was opened in Brasov in 2002 and in 2014 a brand new hospice was opened in Bucharest. HOSPICE Casa Sperantei has two mobile palliative care in Fagaras and Zarnesti and a specialist team working in the main children’s hospitals in Bucharest, thanks to the generous support of the Bristol Myers Squibb Foundation.
We are grateful that in 2012 the Florescu family donated a property to HOSPICE Casa Sperantei for the purpose of establishing a healthcare centre situated in Adunatii Copaceni, close to the capital city of Bucharest, for children and their families affected by rare and life-limiting illnesses. It was originally the family’s summer residence, which had been confiscated by the communist regime and, finally, returned to them decades later. The property includes a historic conac (manor), a chapel and various other buildings.
Thank you for joining us in completing the necessary renovations and equipping the remaining facilities. Your support has enabled us to finish this project and transform this beautiful gift into a new Home of Hope.
Graham Perolls CMG OBE
Founder, Executive Director
Every child’s life, as short as is may be, is changing the humanity forever
HOSPICE Casa Sperantei’s vision is that all patients in Romania suffering from an incurable illness should receive proper palliative care, at the appropriate time, so that they can live every moment with dignity, alongside their family.
The incurable illness may affect anyone, at any moment, and when something like this is happening his or her life is changed forever. A permanent struggle is starting, a fight with and for their own lives. It is a terrible fight, 24/7 and exhausting for both the patient and his family. It is a fight which, unfortunately, many patients in Romania still lose it before they even have a real chance to start it. Far, far too many patients are losing this fight… To be more exact, we need to consider that only 11% of the patients needing palliative care are receiving this in Romania at a proper time.
And when something so dramatically happens to a child, the burden of the fight is even harder to endure… When a child is fighting with a diagnostic of incurable disease, the whole family is suffering along his or her side. The life of the mother, father and siblings are affected and many times they cannot cope with the pressure. The child usually receives no support from the public medical system, the school may not have the best ways to integrate a suffering child into its system and the society is excluding the sick child. In his or her years of growing and beginning of life, the sick child is facing the physical pain, rejection and lack of support. This pushes the child even more towards a marginalized and vulnerable group of our society.
HOSPICE Casa Sperantei ambition and mission is to continue being a pioneer in the pediatric palliative care in Romania. Since 1992 our foundation is offering free palliative care for adults and children in need. Our ambitious project at Copaceni is to build a ground-breaking center for Romanian children with rare and life-limiting illnesses. It is the very first of its kind, a unique hospice in Romania and in the region!
The hospice center from Copaceni is a unique socio-medical center for our children patients, offering healthcare treatment, social and educational activities, summer camps, respite center for the families and also an educational center for both families and also medical staff from the region, designed to move forward the pediatric palliative care in Romania and in the region.
CEO, HOSPICE Casa Sperantei