Proceeds from the auction of Banksy’s artwork Game Changer have been donated to Acorns Children’s Hospice.
£200,000 has been given to the charity from the sale of the piece which was gifted to Southampton Hospitals Charity in May 2020 during the height of the pandemic.
Acorns has allocated £143,000 of the amount towards its Room to Grow Appeal, a £750,000 fundraising appeal for a major refurbishment of its Black Country hospice in Walsall.
The remaining amount has been allocated to the Acorns Family Services and Outreach teams based at the hospice and their work supporting hundreds of families in the local community.
Noel Cramer, Director of Supporter Engagement at Acorns, said: “Game Changer is a particularly powerful piece from an iconic artist, and one of the defining images of the pandemic.
“We are so grateful to Southampton Hospitals Charity for this wonderful gift, an amount which brings us a step closer to the target of our fundraising appeal and supports the ongoing provision of our care right across the Black Country.”
Banksy’s pandemic ‘thank you’
Game Changer appeared suddenly in May 2020 at University Hospital Southampton as a thank you to its staff during the first wave of the Covid pandemic.
The piece depicts a boy playing with superhero toys, discarding Batman and Spiderman and instead choosing to play with a masked nurse in a Red Cross uniform. A note accompanied the artwork, saying: “Thanks for all you’re doing. I hope this brightens the place up a bit, even if it’s only black and white.”
Funds are being distributed throughout the UK to benefit a wider community of healthcare providers and charities that work to enhance the care and treatment provided by the NHS.
Noel added: “We love everything that this image represents. It’s a powerful reminder of the commitment and service provided by organisations up and down the country, both within the NHS and children’s hospices like Acorns.
“It’s incredibly fitting that the amount will support our vital work, and the hundreds of local children and families that rely on our love, care and support.”
The Acorns Room to Grow Appeal, which currently stands at over £600,000, aims to raise funds towards a number of significant upgrades at Acorns in the Black Country, including bedrooms, corridors, dining room and a new purpose-built arts and crafts room.
The improvement works will also see the hospice become the first of the three Acorns hospices to have piped oxygen in bedrooms, in recognition of the increasing medical complexities of the children the charity cares for.
Find out more about how you can support the Acorns Room to Grow Appeal.