Suffolk’s Coronavirus Community Fund has now reached £1.5M of its initial £2M target, supported over 232 charities and reached over 120,393 vulnerable Suffolk people during lockdown. But in order to continue supporting them, and to reach many more, a ‘Social Media Army’ of volunteers is needed to create far greater awareness that giving locally to the fund is absolutely vital to support vulnerable people now and in the months and years ahead.
The stark reality of how important this message is was demonstrated in a survey conducted by Community Action Suffolk and reported in the East Anglian Daily Times last week. The survey reported that as many as 60% of local charities said that they would not exist within 12 months if additional financial support isn’t forthcoming.
The usual means of fundraising for these organisations ceased to exist beyond lockdown’ says Suffolk Community Foundation’s Head of Public Affairs Tim Holder, who are managing the fund for Suffolk. ‘Charity shops closed overnight and everyday fundraising events like coffee mornings, jumble sales and book sales have all been cancelled indefinitely. At the same time demands on our local charities and community groups have been going through the roof. It’s the perfect storm for any charity or community group trying to help vulnerable people. But there are things we can do to help during lockdown and beyond.
Even before lockdown, Social Media was already playing an important role in keeping people in touch, but now Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and other platforms are, in many cases, the central way for families, friends and work colleagues to stay connected. It is hoped that now people will use it as a force for good in Suffolk to promote the emergency fund.
Tim Holder continues, ‘We thank everyone who has already stepped up to give what they can afford, but now more than ever before, we need more local people to know just how important giving locally is. The Suffolk Coronavirus Community Fund has been set up as a very easy way for people to make a difference and save lives, but not enough people know about it. We need more people to give and more caring Suffolk people to help us tell that story.’
This project is part of Suffolk’s ‘Home, But Not Alone’ initiative and is supported by Suffolk County Council, Community Action Suffolk, Suffolk Healthwatch, Suffolk Chamber of Commerce, Suffolk Association of Local Councils, Suffolk Police and Crime Commissioner and The East Anglian Daily Times.
To sign up and play your part in Suffolk’s ‘Social Media Army’ or to make a donation/donate to the fund please click here.
To read the full story in today’s EADT, click here.