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Getting organised for the ones you love

Hello! My name is Carole and I would like to talk to you about Wills. Not the most exciting of subjects, I know, but rather than tell you why you should make one, I wanted explain why I did.


Wills are certainly not on the top of anyone’s to do list. I had hit most of life’s main milestones before getting round to it – I’d bought a house, married and become a parent. But it wasn’t until I started work at St Oswald’s Hospice over 17 years ago that it moved from something I’d 'get round to one day' to a 'must do job.'


You see, my role at St Oswald's Hospice is as a coordinator on the fundraising team, with my main focus on our in memory legacy events and campaigns. This means that I often meet and chat to the families whose loved ones have used St Oswald’s many services. Sadly, its often after their loved one has died that I meet their families and hear how the hospice has made a difference at a difficult time.


Life is full of surprises, good and bad. You truly never know what’s around the corner and it makes sense to try and prepare for any eventuality. 


Chatting to the families made me realise a few things. Life is full of surprises, good and bad. You truly never know what’s around the corner and it makes sense to try and prepare for any eventuality. I’ve spoken to people who have had a loved one die with no Will, or one that hasn’t been updated for a long time and it can cause a lot of difficulties for those left behind. It really made me think about my own situation- what would happen if I died, or my husband was no longer here? Who would take care of our daughter and what would happen to my house and pension?


In 2010, I started working on St Oswald’s Hospice Make a Will Month campaign, which offers supporters the chance to make  a Will with a local solicitor, for a reduced rate. The solicitor then gifts back the fee to St Oswald’s, meaning those taking part benefit from a lower cost Will, and the Hospice raises funds. It all seemed so simple – a no brainer really! I decided it was time to practice what I preach – so I signed up to take part! My husband and I made joint Wills through a local solicitor and it was such a weight off my mind to get my affairs in order.


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Now, nine years on, there have been some changes in my life. My little girl is now a 27-year-old-woman, who recently married and has her own house, and my husband and I are the proud grandparents to six month old Buddy, a Labrador puppy. I am hoping the future might bring us some human grandchildren, and that will probably be the time when we revisit our Will. I have encouraged my daughter and her husband to think about making their first one too. When the time comes, we will all be using St Oswald’s Make a Will Month.


Make a Will Month is an easy way for local people, like you and I, to support our own, and other people's families.


Make a Will Month takes place throughout June, but you can make an appointment now. Have a look on our website for more information and see which local solicitors near you are taking part this year. There are solicitors located across the region and you can make an appointment at a time to suit you – just make sure you mention St Oswald’s Hospice Make a Will Month when booking your appointment. And of course, if you would like any more information, please get in touch! You can contact the team and I on 0191 246 9123 or email fundraising@stoswaldsuk.org.


All the best


Carole Jacobs