HOW IT ALL BEGAN.
Lorraine and Lee Lewis were so moved when Lee's mum was hospitalised with cancer that it led them to set up a charity.
Recognising the fear, upset and loneliness faced by individuals undergoing cancer treatment and their loved ones, the duo were determined that their charity would make a real difference. They set about sourcing donations, packaging and delivering gifts, whilst giving support to patients on oncology wards. That was April 2016, when The Lewis Foundation was born.
Today, the team has almost 50 volunteers and hundreds of regular supporters. The Lewis Foundation has gone from delivering 80 gift packs a month to one hospital, to delivering over 2,500 gifts to fourteen hospitals in the Midlands every month.
Patients pick their gift from a gift list with 29 different packs to choose from and no donations taken in return.
Depending on which pack you choose, it may contain overnight essentials and toiletries, craft set, hydration supplies, puzzles, miniature radios complete with batteries and headphones, and lots, lots more – items many people in hospital might find difficult to buy themselves or simply cannot afford. For some individuals receiving cancer treatment, The Lewis Foundation volunteers are their only regular visitors.
Lorraine and Lee are finding there is a growing demand for The Lewis Foundation services as they move into their sixth year. They are constantly approached by hospitals as NHS resources are continually stretched, and their new aspiration is to help even more people – not just in the Midlands but nationwide.