ENGINEERS are helping hospice staff maintain their clean bill of health with the donation of a host of anti-viral products.

Cleaning specialists Ruck Engineering and Cleaning Technology have delivered bottles of alcohol hand gel and spray bottles and containers of antiviral disinfectant as St Teresa’s Hospice, Darlington, battles to keep coronavirus at bay.

Managing director Simon Ruck said: “We are long-time supporters of St Teresa’s and fully appreciate the difficulties they are facing at the moment.

“Over the years we have attended many of the fundraising events that are the lifeblood of the organisation and have had to be cancelled or postponed this year because of Covid-19. They really do need the support of the community to continue their fantastic work.

“We specialise in chemicals many of which are effective against coronavirus. So providing them for the hospice makes perfect sense as a way for us to help.”

St Teresa’s Hospice chief executive Jane Bradshaw said: “Ruck Engineering and Cleaning Technology have helped us out on countless occasions in the past and we are so grateful that at a time of great need they have stepped in again.”

The generous donation is the latest since St Teresa’s Hospice launched an emergency appeal after the health crisis caused by coronavirus stifled fundraising efforts.

St Teresa’s Hospice needs to raise £3m a year to provide free care for people living with life-limiting illnesses and their families in Darlington, South Durham and North Yorkshire.

All traditional fund raising events have ceased and all its charity shops have had to close. Only the eBay on-line store remains operational.

An on-line appeal has been launched with a Just Giving Page https://www.justgiving.com/campaign/HugToStTs and members of the public can also become official ‘Friends of the Hospice’.

Hospice innovations so far have included asking café-goers to donate the money they would normally spend on a cuppa, joining the virtual dogshow #StTsPawtraits and asking commuters to donate the cost of a tank of fuel now they are not travelling.

Mrs Bradshaw added: “These are incredibly difficult conditions for us all and with the continued support of our brilliant community I’m sure we can endure this unprecedented and challenging period to maintain the care we offer to people during their most testing times.”