Writing a letter to someone you don’t know is challenge enough but then add in that they are in hospital with cancer, and the challenge can seem too much.

But our Donate A Letter campaign asks you to do just that. The response that we have had, and the letters we’ve received, has been overwhelming. The kindness within the words shines through and seems to make the letter writing easy.

If you’d like to join our Donate A Letter campaign and need some inspiration, here are some beginnings, middles and endings from letters already sent to point you in the right direction.

How to begin

The first line is often the hardest. Use one of our first lines and then let your pen do the rest of the work.


I know that we are strangers but I also know that time spent in hospital isn’t easy.

You flick through a magazine. You’d like to read but can’t settle to a book. You try to remember what you ordered for lunch. You guess who might come to visit you today.

Dear You,

I am not sure what sort of person you are, what you like, what you’d like to find when you open this letter but I thought I would give you a poem…

In the middle

Tell your story, our anecdote. It may be about you, your pet, your study, your family, favourite foods, holiday memories. Just share something of yourself with the reader.

Today I watered my garden. This is only the second garden I’ve ever planted. For many years I refused to have anything to do with gardens. They were places to visit and admire but not to take care of – weed, water, harvest. Such a bother. But this year, like many people I've had a miserable time. It felt like everything was falling apart, losing its shape. So I decided I needed a new hobby and decided to plant a garden. And for some reason, it gave me immense joy….

We think that doctors and nurses heal us after surgery. And they do help. But it is our own bodies that have the ability to heal themselves. We all heal differently and at different speeds. But it is how our bodies recover from the trauma of our surgery or treatment that is amazing. Don’t make comparisons; your own special magic is doing its thing.

At the end

Just sign off simply with a line wishing the reader your best and your first name or initials

All the very best to you. Stay strong, for yourself and those around you. And stay your terrific self. Yours. E

Letters often find their own purpose, so I hope this one has found something for or with you.

Take care.

To join our campaign and send a letter of hope to an unmet friend, please contact us here at Donate A Letter. If you would like to receive a letter, please use this link too.

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