Companies across Shropshire are making a real difference in their community, helping to raise more than £100,000 by pledging to become the first ever Hope House Children’s Hospices Business Champions.

Introduced by the charity at the end of 2020 firms can become a Business Champion by generously pledging a donation, which will go towards supporting seriously ill children and their families.

The pandemic has had a huge effect on the finances of the charity, with traditional fundraising events having to be cancelled and shops being closed.

The financial pressures of the last year has meant the charity faces a £1.25 million shortfall in income to date, while there are additional requirements for things like PPE and increased staffing levels, and so the Business Champion initiative was born.

The first cohort of Business Champions from across North Wales, Shropshire, Cheshire and Powys have pledged to directly helping to fund some of the PPE costs for the hospices, with a £100,000 being raised so far.

Cat Dowdeswell, fundraiser for the Business Champion incentive, said: “The hospices need 12 specialist masks and 12 gowns in any one 24-hour period for every child being cared for. This equates to a cost of £78 for each child, per day.

“We invited businesses to become a Champion by initially donating £780 which could cover the cost of 10 days PPE for one child’s stay.

“The response has been overwhelming, with a good number of business donating more than the £780, we are extremely grateful to all those businesses that have got on board supported us in this way, it really is making a difference.”

Andrew Goddard, joint executive chairman of Paterson Enterprises, parent company of Morris Lubricants and Morris Leisure, said: “We wanted to help Hope House which is experiencing the same difficult fundraising challenges.

“We are delighted to become a Hope House Business Champion, which is a fantastic initiative, and are very proud to be doing our bit to help the incredible people who care for and support children and their families at the hospices.”

Sean Dean, CEO of Welshpool-based Invertek said: “When Sumitomo Heavy Industries Ltd acquired Invertek in 2019, we not only bought a great company but one that is intrinsically linked to the community.

“Becoming a Hope House Children’s Hospices Business Champion is a pleasure and is a way we can pay back in some small part to the local community.”

Every year Business Champions will make a pledge towards a specific need for the charity and know that every pound they donate will go towards making sure the hospices can continue to support those that need them the most.

If you or your business is interested in becoming a Business Champion and making a real difference in your community, then please visit