Give to GOSH: Appeal's outstanding success will change children's lives

The Give to GOSH appeal has raised more than £3.5 million and will help critically ill children through research into cures for rare diseases, and support given to parents and patients when they are at their most vulnerable.

The Give to GOSH appeal, which has been the most successful appeal in the history of The Independent and the London Evening Standard, ended on 14 February 2016, the 164th anniversary of the foundation of Great Ormond Street Hospital (GOSH).

In 1852 the hospital was known as the Hospital for Sick Children in Great Ormond Street. It was based in a central London townhouse with only two doctors and 10 beds. Since then it has become a world-leading centre for research and the treatment of the most seriously ill children.

Give to GOSH: a final thank you

Now-a-days, as was the case then, the hospital relies heavily on charity and the willingness of the British public to support it in offering some of the best paediatric care in the world.

Martin Elliott, a paediatric heart surgeon and former medical director of the hospital, said: “We can’t be more grateful. There would be no GOSH without charity. It started that way; that’s how it is today. It’s heart-warming to see how much affection people hold for the hospital. And that affection and the generosity of the British public is one of the reasons why we are so dedicated to the relentless pursuit of excellence in the care we offer.”

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What your support will mean

Funds from the three-month Give to GOSH appeal will support the creation of a dedicated heart unit for the most seriously ill cardiac patients. The unit, due to be completed in 2017, will help patients such as two-year-old Elliott.

Some of the £3.56 million raised by the appeal will also allow the Louis Dundas Centre for Children’s Palliative Care to continue its vital work helping children with life-limiting and life-threatening illnesses. Palliative care has rarely had the funding or research it deserves and staff at the Louis Dundas Centre say the focus on their work could transform the public’s perception of what they do.

Research teams at GOSH will also use £1 million of funds from the appeal for medical research into rare children’s diseases, including developing gentler, less traumatic forms of treatment for childhood cancers such as brain tumours. The focus will be on improving survival rates and long-term outcomes for these children, by using funding from the appeal as 'pump primers' to attract further research funding and to get projects off the ground.

Read more about the appeal

Adapted from an article originally published in The Independent on 13 February 2016.