Although supported by some state money, Edinburgh’s Milestone House, Scotland‘s only hospice Ior people with AIDS, needs to raise a lurther £300,000 a year lrom charitable sources to meet its operating costs. In an attempt to raise some otthat money, Rab C. Nesbitt star Gregor Fisher has mobilised triends and colleagues in the entertainment business to pertorm, organise and provide technical support Ior A Wee Soiree tor Milestone House - a benelit gig at Edinburgh’s Usher Hall.

As well as Fisher, the all-star line-up includes Elaine C. Smith, Gerard Kelly, Eric Cullen, Andy Gray, Helen Lederer, Jonathan Watson, Tony Roper, David Anderson, Norman Lovett and Deacon Blue‘s Ricky Ross. The gig takes place on Sunday 23 February and tickets cost £7.50, £8.50 and £9.50 (Usher Hall Box Dttice, 2281155).

Here some at the stars explain their reasons tor getting involved: Gregor Fisher: ‘I just wanted to make a difference it I could make V4 per cent difference and others did the same. . .’ Gerard Kelly: ‘I support lots at things, but this is a great cause. Milestone House is the only hospice tor people with HIV in Scotland.’ Elaine C. Smith: ‘Far too many men and women have died already receiving too little care. There are too Iew resources. I am very happy to support Milestone House} David Anderson: ‘HIV is reaching into most communities. We cannot be

. " .. ' “,9 ,3? 5 " v complacent—we allhavetodo - w - ., -: -. .34 .3“ something.’ u . - ' . -. 3..» a. i, .‘ AWeeSoireetorMilestoneHouse, " “"~ -' ‘-*‘ " i .-'- ram UsherHall,EdinburghSunday23

Milestone House: a beautilul, bright. modern building at pale rick and dark Fabtual'y- wood, spacious antllull ollightlromthe many windows and glass rool.

Milestone House. Scotland‘s only AIDS hospice celebrates its first i provided care foraround a hundred people. anniversary this month. Sue Wilson went along to see for herself the Dependmgm the 3mg“ 0‘ ‘l‘c‘r'llncss‘

' . ' t I . . people come for convalescent care. respite Very prdCthdl Cdre ‘md Support It prOV‘des' care or terminal care. Though in many ways its approach is similar to other hospices. the

3 style and range of its accommodation is

'd never been in a hospice before. and the SDOOker- it's like coming to 21 hotel. in 21 ; more or less unique. Residents stav in one of what I'd read of them. about ‘a way. it'S almost like it WCC hOlidilY ft” 7 four bungalows attached to the central block peaceful. loving environment‘ where People- It is also about 3Ckn0WlCdging i (most rooms are single. though there are sick people are enabled to ‘die with death and When it happens “'9 deal With it 1 four doubles for couples). each with its own dignity" had left me with a mental lounge. conservatory and kitchenette. picture ofhushed. half-lit places. with a _ _ c . . l Familv. friends and children are encouraged sort ofchurch-like ambience. Milestone ‘The dei'n'llon 0‘ hosp'ce '5 “safe haven” to stay with residents each room has a House. Scotland‘s only hospice and and I think that’s what we otter here, it’s convértible sofa bed, and guest rooms are continuing care unit for people with AIDS not about dying, it’s about safety.’ available 4 and are fully involved in the care and HIV. could hardly be more different and support provided: fromthisimage—it’sabeautiful. bright. ‘It‘stremendoiistobe abletoofferthat.‘ modern building ofpale brick and dark savs Ruth Mtircv. ‘People are scared about wood. spaCious and full oflight from the very practically. very carefully. very well. death. a lot ofthem haven't had anvdirect many windows and glass roof. the inside we provide support for people here in contact with death before. and although decked with pictures. plants and a bustling. respite care (to give those lttOkingzlfterthem thev‘d like to be able to look after people at lively atmosphere. The radio‘s on. people at home a break) who are looking at what home it’s frightening. because vou‘re on are Sitting around chatting and reading. a might very Well be their own future. They your own althoughthere mavbe nurses

couple ofthem are playing snooker. children have a Chance to talk about their fears. about and doctors around. thev can‘t be there are running about. and there s not a uniform getting towards the end oftheir lives how is tweiitv-four hours a dav: But here people

in Sight. . . . o it going to happen. when is it going to 'can look after someone knowing that thev ‘The definition of hospice is “safe haven" happen? It‘s about taking these things on. just have to buzz and a nurse will be there and I think that‘s what we offer here. it's not and people do respond to that. will perhaps within seconds. It means we can help them aboutdying. it'saboutsafety.'says Ruth Start thiiikingabout makingtheirwill.or all the wavthrough the process. and itmakes Murie. Nurse Manager at Milestone House. Sorting out provision for their kids. We trv to it all a bit less frightening. thev know that ‘A positive atmosphere isn‘t something we encourage people to live for everv dav. that them will be support around for them when have to work that hard to create now. it's kind ofthing—though that‘s easvfor meto somebodv eventuallv does die '(Sue justhere;1ife goes on. as much as we can sit here and say. it‘s much harder to do in Wilson) ' i i i i make it. Being positive isjust about living . practice.’ with people who are here. providing Milestone House has been open for almost For further information contact Milestone diversions with things like the writingand exactly a year tt took its first resident on 18 HUI-(31’ ()3] 44'] 6%") ()r ll’ai'erlcv (are ()3! art workshops we offer. there‘s the TV and J February l99l and in that time has 220 4697. I

“no List—14 27—February 199513