THE boss of the Earl Mountbatten Hospice has urged people not to abandon the charity following the departure of its fundraising champion.
Chief executive Tina Harris said she was disappointed some people had withdrawn their support for the Isle of Wight hospice as a result of fundraising manager Karen Eeles — widely regarded as the face of the charity — leaving under a cloud.
Fundraisers Andrew and Jane Gibbs, who run Island pubs The Bargeman's Rest, Steamer Inn and Arreton Barns, and organise the annual Sweetcorn Fayre, said they would no longer support the hospice due to the treatment of Mrs Eeles.
Mrs Harris today (Monday) told the County Press a restructuring of jobs at the hospice would benefit patients.
"All organisations have to change. We do some fantastic fundraising events but our fundraising efforts will have to step up. You can't go on doing the same thing year after year and hoping to bring in more money.
"It's absolutely disappointing to lose anyone. I never intended that to happen. Absolutely everyone in this review has been offered a job that suits their strengths and skills. We have gone to some lengths to make sure everyone has opportunities — it's disappointing if people do decide to take their skills elsewhere.
"I'm really disappointed to lose any support. The last thing I want is for people to become disaffected and withdraw their valuable support for what I believe they gave it for in the first place, which is the patients."
As reported last week, Mrs Eeles is to be replaced by a head of income generation. She was interviewed for that role but not offered the post. Several other members of the team will also lose their jobs. It is understood some staff were offered alternative posts with less responsibility and lower salaries.
See Friday's County Press for the full story.