Chairperson: ‘Hospices built without a cent borrowed or owed’

Chairperson of Mayo-Roscommon Hospice, Mike Smith, welcomed the Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly and all those involved in the development of Roscommon Hospice to last Friday’s official opening, and announced that both Hospice buildings (Roscommon and Castlebar) had been built at a total cost of €15 million “without a cent borrowed or owed”. 

  He said the Roscommon Hospice site purchase was agreed in a matter of hours “thanks to the generous and agreeable nature of the Hannon family” and paid tribute to his own family for their support throughout the project. 

  “We all know cancer and other illnesses are not going away and the work of this board and future boards will not end today. While we now have two excellent Hospices in Mayo and Roscommon, the board will be launching a five-year strategy plan in February 2022 and our fundraising efforts will be ongoing as we continue to raise money for these services,” he said.

  Mr. Smith said that it had been a real pleasure to work alongside current Hospice CEO Martina Jennings. 

  “During this entire process, we were incredibly lucky to have at the helm of our Foundation, our CEO Martina Jennings. Her incredible enthusiasm, work ethic, can-do attitude and positive energy has helped bring us to where we are today. She has no coordinated the building of two Hospices while continuing to run the Foundation at an outstandingly high level,” he said. 

  The Hospice Chairperson paid tribute to board members past and present and the people of Mayo and Roscommon, including support groups, volunteers, donors, and members the general public. 

  “Those of you who have walked, climbed, jumped, dyed your hair, shaved your heads, cut your beards, completed marathons, singathons, quizzed, golfed, danced all day, made tea, coffee, cakes, buns, tarts, sold tickets, stood at churches, and donated your pocket money, we welcome you all here. It is all your efforts we are recognising here with the opening of this magnificent facility,” he said. 

  “For over 28 years you have donated to this dream without any tangible evidence of a building or site until 2012 when the Castlebar ground was acquired. It is remarkable the trust you’ve put in the Foundation, and now we’re very proud to be the biggest Hospice bed provider in the west of Ireland.

  “With the cost of both Hospices approximately €15.5 million, I’m delighted to be able to announce that both have been built and fitted out without a cent borrowed or owed”.