Supporting charities and those in need during COVID-19

Coming together as a society is essential, and together we can help charities supporting the most vulnerable people in society during this challenging time.

As we round off week two of a UK wide lockdown, and events continue to be cancelled or postponed, the reality of staying at home is being felt on people, businesses, organisations and charities.

From the London Marathon being postponed until October, the Forth Rail Bridge Abseil in Scotland rescheduled, and many other charitable events changed or cancelled: charities are obviously concerned how they can best support those they care for.

Charitable events are not just fun; they raise a significant amount of money for charities that help a range of causes.

In fact, the London Marathon raised £66.4 million in 2019. Spread across numerous charities, this money can help organisations run their services for a year or more.

PLEA

In an urgent message to the wider community, Corinne Hutton, founder of Finding Your Feet – a charity supporting people with amputation or limb absence through sporting initiatives and social inclusion projects – posted a plea.

“We have now been supporting amputees of all ages, including some of the most vulnerable in society, for six years,” Corinne commented. “Because of the recent implications on business and events caused by the coronavirus, we are struggling.

“For the first time ever, there is a chance that Finding Your Feet may not be around to provide what we have discovered is an essential service.”

And other charities have echoed their own messages. From WhizzKids, who obtain a lot of funding from the London Marathon, and WellChild – supporting children with serious health problems – stated they were “totally reliant” on fundraising with more than 60 per cent of their £3m income coming from fundraising.

Alzheimer’s Society and Alzheimer’s Research shared £4m in fundraising from the London Marathon alone to help them continue their vital work. It is evident funding cannot cease to exist during these uncertain times.

FUNDING

Thankfully, everyone in society is banding together. But more needs to be done.

In an interview with The Guardian, Karl Wilding, the chief executive of the National Council for Voluntary Organisations (NCVO), said: “We need an emergency package for charities on the frontline of our communities.

“But this is not about the impact on charities, it is about the impact it will have on communities and individuals who rely on charities.”

April would see thousands of walkers take to the hills in Glasgow for the annual KiltWalk event. Unfortunately, this has been postponed, but The Hunter Foundation has announced a 100 per cent top-up to support those the most in need.

And the entire #EnableCommunity can lend a helping hand, too.

EVERY PENNY

We all know that financial strain is a large concern for people at the moment, but you can still make a difference.

If you have a monthly direct debit to a charity, instead of cancelling it completely, you could reduce the amount being given. Even £1 or what you can afford will make the world of difference to charities at this time.

Remember, all the money you donate will help a cause close to your heart and people in the disabled community will still continue to receive vital support.

If you’re saving money on your commute – or weekly coffee – donate some of the money to charity.

Or, join a pub quiz… from home, of course. And the money you would have spent in the pub can go straight to charity.

MAKE IT FUN

For some of us who had been preparing for events, seeing them postponed or cancelled can be disheartening. Never fear, you can still complete them – or start your own challenge – at home.

Running a marathon, cycling, walking, baking – it can all be done from the comfort of your own home. All you need is some imagination.

From an isolation challenge to support the NHS or hospital charities; adding a donation to your Amazon purchase through Amazon Smile – there are plenty of charities to choose from – on a regular basis or during a one off purchase; or completing your own Alzheimer’s Society Cupcake Day at home and donating a fiver – every little really does help.

How will you help a charity close to your heart? Let the #EnableCommunity know on Twitter and Instagram.