Harvest Homemade Café encourage local support for hospice coffee morning

Caring café staff who organised a coffee morning for the South Westmeath Hospice service just days before their much-loved manager died have continued the event in her memory.

Staff at the Harvest Homemade Café in Athlone staged a coffee morning for the South Westmeath Hospice as a way of showing how important their services were in helping their friend Irina in the final stages of her cervical cancer battle.

Assistant manager Louise Canning, 34, was one of the driving forces behind organising the event at short notice in order to bring work colleagues, locals and regular guests together to support manager Irina Maslova, 40.

Now Louise is asking others to register to host a coffee morning on Thursday, September 22, as part of the Bewley’s Big Coffee Morning Social for Hospice at www.hospicecoffeemorning.ie or by calling 0818 995 996.

The nationwide event, which has raised over €41.5 million since its inception celebrates its 30th anniversary this year.

"Everyone who met Irina loved her. She was an amazing person, and because the café is in the town centre, she met a lot of people over the 12 years that she managed it. When she was diagnosed with terminal cervical cancer, we were all devastated and weren't sure how to show her how much everyone thought of her.

"So all 30 staff decided to get everyone together and hold a coffee morning for the South Westmeath Hospice which helped her and her family so much. Unfortunately, she passed away just days after the event in October 2020, leaving her teenage daughter and fiancé behind.

"Everyone still talks about her, so we decided we would continue the annual event in her memory and help the Hospice continue to give their valuable services to those in need of respite and end of life care," Luoise stated.

The coffee morning at the Athlone café on September 22 will, Louise added, bring the community together “to chat, catch up, enjoy memories and keep the memory alive of Irina, our close friend and indeed the heart of the Harvest Homemade Café.”

Together for Hospice, The National Hospice Movement represents 26 Hospice and specialist palliative home care providers supporting patients and their families nationwide.

Funds raised locally stay local and go back into each local hospice service, helping to pay for medical and general staff, palliative care beds, home care visits, specialist equipment and new hospice builds.

Register to host a coffee morning on Thursday, September 22, or on a date that suits you, at: www.hospicecoffeemorning.ie or call-save 0818 995 996. Hosts are provided with a free Coffee Morning Pack containing Bewley’s coffee, posters and invitations.


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