Richard House in spotlight

West Ham United dedicated Saturday's Premier League fixture against Chelsea to raising awareness and funds for Richard House children's hospice.

Richard House, situated in Beckton, is one of West Ham's two designated charities. London's first children's hospice, Richard House has been providing free care and treatment for youngsters with life-limiting and life-threatening conditions and assistance to their families since it was opened in 2000.

Hammers players Mark Noble and Junior Stanislas recently visited Richard House, where they spent an afternoon meeting children and their parents, playing football, planting pots in a greenhouse and helped the youngsters make some models.

"It's nice for us to come here and see the kids and see how they're getting on," said Stanislas. "I hope it was nice for them too. Obviously they have problems of their own but hopefully us coming and mixing with them brightened their afternoon."

A special feature on the pair's visit to Richard House was also available in Saturday's official matchday programme, while the Guardian newspaper on Saturday profiled the excellent work done by all at the hospice.

A number of initiatives took place on Saturday to help to promote Richard House and its invaluable work in supporting youngsters and their families. Collections were staged around the Boleyn Ground, while the players warmed-up in Richard House T-shirts before the game.

Around £1.8m in voluntary donations is needed every year to keep Richard House running.

Richard House will host a number of fundraising events later in 2009, including a London to Paris cycle ride and the Three Peaks Challenge. For more information about these and other events, visit richardhouse.org.uk/supportus/events/

Anyone interested in volunteering to collect funds for Richard House should contact the community fundraising team on 020 7540 0213.

Richard House