Celebrations as £2m fundraising target achieved

Celebrations as £2m fundraising target achieved

Friends of ANCHOR has reached its initial £2 million fundraising target to “deliver the difference” for a new oncology and haematology centre.

In late 2018, the charity launched its ‘ANCHORED Together’ appeal to raise funds over and above the Scottish Government’s capital investment in The ANCHOR Centre, a purpose-built facility that will provide care for cancer and haematology patients in North-east Scotland.

Today the organisation celebrated reaching the fundraising commitment it made to NHS Grampian five years ago, by unveiling its full £2m fundraising gauge with the help of fundraisers who supported the appeal, and NHS colleagues who will head up clinical teams in the Centre.

Friends of ANCHOR Chairman Jim Milne said: “We’re indebted to all those who have helped us reach this campaign milestone; our fundraisers, donors, volunteers and supporters whose efforts have made this possible.

“My sincere thanks go to every individual and organisation that’s come alongside us to support the campaign with their fundraising commitment, time or personal generosity.

“The meaning behind ‘ANCHORED Together’ encapsulates what’s been at the centre of this campaign from the outset – everyone working together in the run up to this long-hoped-for dream becoming a reality. Our fundraising efforts will deliver the difference for the people who will walk through the doors of the Centre for treatment.

“To know this facility will soon be in place to match the excellence of clinical care delivered by the staff day in, day out, is excellent news for the North-east of Scotland.”

Although Friends of ANCHOR has fulfilled its £2m fundraising endeavour, its director says the commitment does not end there.

Sarah-Jane Hogg, who heads up the organisation, said: “Since 1997, we have worked alongside NHS Grampian to enhance the patient experience and that firm commitment is as alive today as it was in our founding days. It is Friends of ANCHOR’s great privilege to continue driving support for the ANCHORED Together appeal until the day the doors open for The ANCHOR Centre, to futureproof the excellence of care and standard of service delivery that these new facilities will offer.

“Our deepest appreciation continues to be felt for our donors who stand with us to assist NHSG in delivering the very best for North-east cancer and haematology patients.”

Friends of ANCHOR’s services within the Centre will include wellbeing and emotional support led by the charity’s dedicated support team. A range of complementary therapies will be offered daily to patients at their chairside and within a specialised therapy room. The group’s refreshment and snack offering will be found within the Friends of ANCHOR hospitality area, and its team will man an information and support hub too.

The charity’s complementary therapy room will afford luxury surroundings for the therapies currently available for patients, including auricular acupuncture, specialist massage and hair and wig styling.

Mrs Hogg continued: “Our spa-inspired complementary therapy room will offer a relaxing, private setting for our therapies to be enjoyed. We’ve never had a space like this before – it’s a first for the Foresterhill site – and will ensure we can deliver an enhanced and holistic experience for patients, conveniently located off the treatment floor.”

Also on offer will be the charity’s funded NHS-led services including podiatry, physiotherapy and ward assistant support that the charity has funded for over 12 years; all dedicated to supporting ANCHOR patients within the hospital environment.

Mrs Hogg added: “Our team will be on hand every day in The ANCHOR Centre to bring an added layer of support for patients, as well as working alongside our NHS colleagues to provide a warm and welcoming environment to everyone who comes through the Centre doors.”

Friends of ANCHOR’s fundraising will equip the facility with improved equipment and upgraded furnishings like more comfortable treatment chairs, and enhancements including state-of-the-art tech for a dedicated teaching and training suite.

It is estimated Friends of ANCHOR’s wellbeing services and support for The ANCHOR Centre will run at £0.5m in first year of the facility opening. That cost comes in addition to the charity’s existing wellbeing service within the ANCHOR inpatient wards and its commitment to medical equipment, research and clinical excellence enhancements – all of which have ongoing and one-off funding initiatives that are covered by the charity.

Friends of ANCHOR has directly served the needs of oncology and haematology patients since 1997. The long-standing partnership with the NHS has seen over £12m directed to positively impact patient treatment and care.

Adam Coldwells, Deputy Chief Executive for NHS Grampian, commended Friends of ANCHOR on the fundraising total. He said: “For 26 years, patients from across the North-east of Scotland have benefitted from the passionate commitment of Friends of ANCHOR and I am delighted that this will continue as we look forward to opening the doors of this facility. I can confidently assure those who have generously supported Friends of ANCHOR’s appeal that your hard-earned contribution will make a positive difference, beyond the core NHS provision, in the lives of those who will use the services of The ANCHOR Centre.

“Thanks to your collective efforts, this will be a Centre to be proud of for ANCHOR staff and for patients and their loved ones. Congratulations and thanks to Friends of ANCHOR for the commitment involved to reach this tremendous milestone.”

The ANCHOR Centre will be the first of its kind in the country, providing all day case and outpatient care for oncology and haematology patients throughout the region. A women’s health facility, The Baird Family Hospital, is also under construction at Foresterhill. It will house oncological clinical and surgical services for breast and gynaecological patients, who will also be supported through Friends of ANCHOR’s ANCHORED Together appeal, with equipment, fixtures and fittings enhancements within the departments. The charity has long supported the breast and gynae departments at Foresterhill and will continue its commitment long after the capital campaign funds are dispersed.

Friends of ANCHOR’s operating costs are fully covered by local firm Balmoral Group, of which the charity’s chairman Sir Jim is also managing director. The sponsorship support has been unwavering since the charity’s founding day in 1997 in covering the full operating costs for the charity so 100% of donations go directly to the cause.

To make a donation towards Friends of ANCHOR’s commitment to The ANCHOR Centre or find out more about how you can get involved, visit friendsofanchor.org, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call 01224 859170.