Hospice concerned national lottery could affect their income

CONCERNS have been raised a national TV lottery may divert vital funds from local hospices.

The Health Lottery, launched last month, has been set up to help raise money for local health causes.

But local charities are worried it will affect their own income streams.

The lottery, set up by Richard Desmond, donates 20p from every £1 to local causes but there are worries it will tempt people to buy tickets for them rather than support a local lottery scheme.

Elland-based Overgate Hospice wants to encourage people to sign up for their lottery instead.

The hospice charity is reliant on the money raised generated each year by its own fundraising lottery. It helps raise money for the £5,000 needed to keep the doors open each day.

Laura Golding, Appeals Manager for Overgate Hospice said: “Our weekly hospice lottery is an essential source of income for Overgate Hospice raising money we need each year to provide our free specialist care services for local people.

“We’re extremely concerned the new Health Lottery could divert significant amounts of money away from local hospice care, which is the last thing we need in this already difficult economic climate.”

David Praill, Chief Executive of Help the Hospices, said: “In these already challenging times, we are very concerned that this new lottery could have a serious impact on the vital funds generated by the hospice lotteries that take place every week across the UK.

“Since the early 1990s hospice lotteries have been an important source of income for hospices across the UK and together raise nearly £50 million each year.”

To join Overgate Hospice’s Lottery for £1 a week call 01422 387121 or pop into any of their charity shops.