A CATHOLIC friendship group raised over £1,000 for Havens Hospices through a year of fundraising.

The Catenian Association’s Southend Circle, which meets at Chalkwell Park, is an organisation for active Catholics which encourages members to support each other spiritually, financially and morally.

As well as organising social activities, the group also regularly holds fundraising events to raise money to support local charities.

Philip Johnstone, Catenian president of the Southend Circle, visited Little Havens Hospice to hand over £1,007 to Susan Lucibello, support services manager at the hospice, care team worker Amy Frost and six year old Iris Connolly who is cared for at the hospice.

He said: “The Catenian’s meet in order to strengthen family life and faith through friendship so I was really proud to be able to visit the hospice on behalf of the Southend Circle and see for myself how donations are used to support local families.I was particularly delighted to meet Iris and talk to Amy about her work, it made our visit very special.”

Havens Hospices, which has centres in Westcliff and Thundersley, does not receive Government funding and must raise £100,000 every week to continue providing respite breaks and end of life care to people with life limiting illnesses.

Miss Frost said: “It was lovely to meet Philip, it’s so nice to be able to thank people personally for their donations. We care for seriously ill children and their families from across Essex, and it’s a real privilege, but it would not be possible without the support of the community. ”

For more information, visit www.thecatenians.co.uk.