The Sophie Rolf Trust - KissyPuppy
Many Islanders will remember beautiful little Sophie Rolf, who lost her valiantly fought battle against an inoperable brain tumour at the end of 2013 when she was just 6 years old. Her KissyPuppy fund was initially set up to support Sophie and her family, helping with travel costs to the mainland, equipment and creating magical experiences and memories.
Sophie's journey, through treatment including neuro and central line surgery, radiotherapy, chemotherapy, numerous MRI, CT scans and many other tests, highlighted to her family the limited healthcare options available on the Isle of Wight for children with life shortening conditions. There is no specialist children's hospice on the Island - respite and end of life care was a 3 hour journey away in Winchester.
Early on in her treatment, Sophie decided she wanted to help other children and that's exactly what she did. Within a few months, her smile, positivity and enduring spirit had led to £10,000 being raised for a first project - a designated area within the Island's Earl Mountbatten Hospice (EMH) for children and their families. Towards the end of her short life, Sophie opened the Children's Rooms at the Hospice and had already started on her next project - a playground within the grounds.
Sophie's courageous family have pledged to continue what she started. Their registered charity, The Sophie Rolf Trust - KissyPuppy, has joined forces with the Earl Mountbatten Hospice, local NHS and the Community Nursing Team to help support, develop and improve existing provision on the Island for children and their families.
Their achievements to date include the initial funding of the Hospice rooms including specialised medical equipment, the children's playground, a year's worth of funding for the Schools Project (which involves inviting primary schools into the Hospice to educate the children, and parents, about what goes on, and to hopefully alter any misconceptions they may have). Funding, should the Hospice rooms be needed, comes solely from the charity and the cost of this provision for one child/family can be in excess of £20,000.
In 2016 funding was provided for a new Island wide Bereavement Service - aimed at children and young adults, but assisting anyone affected by bereavement in any way. A specially adapted vehicle was also purchased to enable the respite nurses to take children out and about without relying on NHS or EMH vehicles.
In December 2017 KissyPuppy pledged £300,000 towards the total of £1.5 million needed to refurbish Oak House at the Earl Mountbatten Hospice. The care co-ordination centre will focus on catering for specific groups and needs, and will have a bespoke children's area.
During 2017 we managed, with the help of Harbour users and vistors, to raise over £4,300. We'd dearly love to beat that this year and hope you will support our efforts. We are delighted and honoured to be able to help support this wonderful Island charity.
Thank you so much - Fiona