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Page last updated at 17:37 GMT, Tuesday, 16 March 2010
EACH Treehouse Appeal is underway

Mark Murphy kick started BBC Suffolk's support

BBC Suffolk's support for the EACH Treehouse Appeal has been welcomed with open arms by listeners, who have been quick to suggest fundraising ideas.

Mark Murphy announced the search for £3m to build a new children's hospice on a Breakfast Show broadcast live from the EACH bungalow in Ipswich.

James Hazell then picked up the baton and was amazed by the response.

"We realised how generous, supportive and giving the people of Suffolk truly are," he said.

Do whatever it takes

"Good morning and welcome to a very special day," said Mark Murphy as he opened Breakfast and launched BBC Suffolk's support for the Treehouse Appeal.

"You and me, we're going to build a hospice."

Mark was broadcasting live from Walker Close in Ipswich, where East Anglia's Children's Hospices (EACH) has been supporting seriously ill children since 1999.

It's outgrown the three bedroom bungalow and BBC Suffolk is now helping EACH to make the dream of a purpose built hospice a reality.

So starting on Tuesday, 16 March, 2010 we're asking you to show your support and fundraising ideas to help us reach the £3m mark.

Melanie Chew is in charge of the fundraising for the Treehouse Appeal
Fundraising director Melanie Chew was delighted with the early support

"£3m is a daunting figure but we'll do whatever it takes," said presenter James Hazell. "We'll build the new hospice brick by brick if we have to."

James's show received a wide variety of support and proposals from across the county.

Over £500 was donated, whilst other listeners offered James fundraising incentives ranging from naming the date he'll marry his partner of 22 years Karen (£25) or giving up smoking (£200).

James and producer Sally Burch are contemplating some of the other suggestions - which included abseiling down the side of Ipswich Hospital, a motorcycle rally, a bed push, a horse trek and a Norfolk v Suffolk football or cricket match.

Much to Sal's annoyance the biggest call to action was for the Hazellettes to reform and record a special Treehouse song.

Official launch

Meanwhile, around 300 supporters of EACH gathered at Trinity Park to celebrate the official Treehouse Appeal launch.

Signed 'bricks' at Trinity Park
People pledged their support via a signed brick at Trinity Park

Visitors showed their support for the campaign by signing faux bricks. This idea will be replicated as part of the campaign, with £50 buying supporters a dedicated brick as part of EACH's woodland walk.

"It's something that makes it so real," said screenwriter, author and EACH supporter Anthony Horowitz.

"This is not money that's disappearing into some great ether, this is money that is being used to build something priceless."

Anthony said the appeal is ambitious, but realistic.

"£3m is a lot of money. I know these are difficult times and there's demand on people's wallets, but when you think about it there are charities out there with advertising budgets, with huge extra costs, high salaries for their staff - that is not what this is.

"This is like a small family charity. Family is what it's all about - it's local families benefiting from it, local families running, working and volunteering for it - so I think £3m is really achievable.

"Every penny they receive you'll see it go - brick by brick being built."

Another supporter at Trinity Park was Roy Gray, who has raised £25,000 over the last four years playing skiffle with his group The Hasbeens.

"We're all over 65, we don't take any money for ourselves - it's just for East Anglia's Children's Hospices," said Roy.

"Pubs, clubs, parties, weddings, we don't mind. If we're available, we'll sing."

Tony Golding, fundraiser for EACH
Tony Golding has been a key fundraiser for EACH

Several of the families who have benefited from EACH's services were also present.

Tony Golding lost his grandson Samuel to spinal muscular atrophy in 2000, but so enamoured was he by EACH's support that he's been fundraising on its behalf ever since.

"My daughter and son in law stayed in the hospice with Sam from day one," Tony told Lesley Dolphin.

"Within a few days the grandparents who could also take up residence did so, and so it was that we spent the last three weeks of Sam's life in the hospice.

"The staff supported the family as a whole in many ways and sacrificed days off to ensure the support was always there.

"EACH was there for us as a family, and we want to see that continue into the future for any that require the services it provides."

Donate now

To give money, please send a cheque made payable to "EACH Treehouse Appeal" to:

EACH Treehouse Appeal, Epsilon House, West Road, Ipswich, IP3 9FJ

The appeal donation line number is 01473 276116.

Donate online at EACH Treehouse Appeal .

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EACH Treehouse Appeal supported by BBC Suffolk EACH Treehouse Appeal
BBC Suffolk is helping East Anglia's Children's Hospices raise the 3million needed to fund a purpose built hospice in Ipswich.
Local events
Check out the EACH section for things to do across Suffolk
Video: BBC Suffolk's BIG Night Out

EACH Treehouse Appeal recording session Audio: EACH's new Treehouse song

BBC Radio Suffolk presenter Mark Murphy Mark Murphy and Kevin Burch report on the Treehouse Appeal launch




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