Patients, supporters and celebrities attend special reception at Number 11 Downing Street

On Wednesday 25 May, The Rt Hon George Osborne MP hosted a special reception at Number 11 Downing Street to celebrate the success of the Evening Standard and Independent Newspaper’s Christmas appeal ‘Give to GOSH’.

The appeal which launched in November 2015 was match-funded by the government, helping to raise an incredible £3.5 million for the hospital by 14 February 2016.

The special evening gave thanks to those who had generously donated to the appeal including companies, individuals, supporters and representatives from the newspaper. 

Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne said: “One of the easiest decisions I've taken as Chancellor was to back the Give to GOSH appeal with a double your money pledge, and ‎it was great to hear how it had raised £3.5 million. Thank you to all who supported the appeal."

GOSH patient outside Number 11 Downing Street
“But above all, I think we should thank the staff at Great Ormond Street who work so tirelessly and give so much of their own lives to the parents and the children who are fighting against the odds.”

Money raised by the appeal will be spent on a new specialist heart unit, pioneering new research, the Louis Dundas Centre for Children’s Palliative Care, and on extra support for families including funding the hospital’s play team.

Great Ormond Street Hospital’s Chief Executive Peter Steer also gave a speech, adding “Thank you, Chancellor, for the Government’s support of the hospital through the appeal and to Evgeny Lebedev and all at ESI Media. Not only have you helped us raise vital funds – but you enabled us to tell the stories of our patients and staff in a thoughtful way. The remarkable contribution of our corporate partners, charitable trusts and foundations and the many individual donors will help us to turn our hopes into a reality, helping more children to fulfil their potential and have a brighter future.”

All the patients in attendance had featured in the newspaper appeal and included heart-transplant patient Evie from Manningtree, Essex. For Evie this was her second meeting with the chancellor after their first encounter at the hospital last year. Rowan, who is treated at Great Ormond Street Hospital (GOSH) for leukaemia, Ralph, who is awaiting a kidney transplant and Elliott also attended. Elliott was kept alive at GOSH for more than a year by a mechanical heart — longer than any other child in the UK.

Elliott’s father Adrian said of the evening, “Tonight I felt especially proud of Elliott, he has achieved more in his two years than I could ever imagine. The generosity of those who donated to the appeal is truly humbling.”