Martin Nathan at the launch. / SUR

'I thought we could really do something important using Joan's passing as a stimulant'

Martin Nathan is spearheading Cudeca's latest campaign to convert Joan Hunt's house into a children's palliative care unitMartin Nathan Chairman of TRE

TONY BRYANT BENALMÁDENA.

The Cudeca Foundation recently launched its latest campaign under the banner of Joan Hunt - One in a Million, an initiative that continues to pay tribute to the charity's founder, who died in June.

In association with Talk Radio Europe (TRE), the campaign has been organised to raise money to convert the house where Joan lived into a children's palliative care unit.

Chairman of TRE, Martin Nathan, who devised the campaign, explained to SUR in English why this facility is so important, and also how he intends to raise the money.

Martin Nathan On Joan Hunt"Joan had incredible drive and energy and she had the ability to make people around her believe that the impossible could be achieved"

What is the significance of the name of the campaign?

There is so much love for Joan Hunt that when she passed I thought we could really do something important using her passing as a stimulant. She was a one- in-a-million kind of person, so I came up with the idea of the campaign name, One in a Million.

How did the idea come about?

I originally had the idea just after Joan died, but I knew nothing about the house at the time. When I heard that Cudeca had decided to repurpose it as a state-of-the-art in-patient palliative care facility for children and teenagers, it started bells ringing.

Is there a difference between palliative care for adults and children?

Yes. This is really important, because palliative care for adults cannot be easily adapted for children. Children have different needs, because they need care that is appropriate for conditions that are not seen in adults. Their size affects dosages and their age affects their understanding of the condition and its implications.

Are there any other children's palliative care units in Andalucía?

No. This will be the first of its kind in Spain.

How much do you need to raise?

The cost of the conversion of the house is 90,000 euros, and annual running costs will be another 70,000 euros. My aim is to raise one million euros in order to ensure that this facility would always be self-financing. The unit would support 100 children each year and offer a comprehensive approach to the needs of both children and their families. For that we need to ensure a team of expert professionals and volunteers, both to care at home, in the new in-patient facility or at the day care centre

When do you hope to open the new unit?

We are hoping to have it up and running within six months.

How can people get involved?

TRE will be hosting a crowdfunding campaign between Friday 26 and Sunday 28 November. Everybody has to vocalise their family, their friends and everyone they know to get them to make a donation. All money that is pledged over this weekend will be doubled by our sponsors.

You were a close friend of Joan's; what do you think she would have thought about the new unit?

I think it would have thrilled her. To create a lasting legacy in her name would be wonderful. I am sure she would be extremely happy.