Reuben’s Retreat launches fundraising drive to support building work

Reuben’s Retreat is to start fundraising to support the final two stages of building work to create family accommodation at its base on the edge of the Peak District.

The charity recently passed the £6 million mark in funds raised to support families who have lost a child or whose children are living with medical complexities.

It was set up on August 23, 2012, by Nicola Graham, two days after the death of her toddler Reuben.

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Graham, who previously worked in the travel industry, described the £6 million figure as an “incredible milestone”.

The funds have been spent on supporting nearly 2,000 individuals, as well as six phases of building work to convert a 19th-century cottage hospital in Glossop, near Manchester.

The retreat includes a bereavement counselling and support centre and a £1 million activity wing, complete with sensory movie room, playroom and hydrotherapy pool.

The charity – which is currently supporting more than 600 individuals – is now focused on raising funds to support the creation of four self-catering suites and a studio apartment for families.

The accessible accommodation will allow families to enjoy holidays at the retreat. The work is expected to cost “in the millions”, with an exact target set to be finalised in the next few months.

Tickets have already gone on sale for one of the charity’s key fundraising events next year, the REUBall, on July 13, 2024.

Graham said: “We still have a long way to go and, as we celebrate 11 years of operation, 2023 is a pivotal year.”

Reuben’s Retreat has also appointed former senior travel industry executive and children’s hospice boss David Robinson, initially as a paid consultant, to work on its future strategy.

Robinson was product and aviation director for scheduled business at Thomas Cook, and prior to that, worked for Gold Medal. Before retiring last year, he was chief executive of Derian House Children’s Hospice in Lancashire.

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