Cancer charity’s urgent Herts appeal over fundraising crisis and ‘tsunami of demand’
- Credit: Archant
A cancer charity facing “a tsunami of demand” at a time when fundraising from its flagship event is set to hit a devastating low is appealing for urgent help.
Last year people in Hertfordshire raised £405,300 for Macmillan Cancer Support – including £25,100 in Stevenage, £51,600 in North Herts, £36,400 in Welwyn Hatfield and £52,700 in St Albans – by taking part in the charity’s annual coffee morning.
The money raised is used to fund vital services, including nurses and patient grants, but early figures show the number of people planning to hold a coffee morning this year, which officially falls on September 25, has fallen by two-thirds due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The £27.5m raised in the UK in 2019 is expected to fall to under £8m this year – the lowest raised in 11 years.
The charity fears its supporters don’t realise the event is still going ahead – in a virtual or socially-distanced format – and is urging people to find out more.
Herts Macmillan fundraising manager Evie Wilson said: “There has never been a more terrifying time in recent history to receive a cancer diagnosis, with disruption and delays to treatment and fears of increased risk of becoming infected with coronavirus.
“A huge 98 per cent of Macmillan’s income is from donations and events like the coffee morning. While the coffee morning can’t take place in exactly the same way as before this year, there are still lots of ways to get involved.
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“At Macmillan we’re facing a possible tsunami of demand coming towards us this autumn, as the cancer system gets moving again and the backlog of delayed diagnoses begins to be dealt with. Worryingly this increased need for support will come at a time when our fundraised income has dropped significantly.
“We’re facing the hardest year in our 109-year history. It’s no exaggeration to say Macmillan and people with cancer have never needed the public’s help more than we do right now.”
Macmillan will advise people who sign up to the coffee morning on how to hold an event safely during the pandemic.
To sign up to the coffee morning; take on the first ever Coffee Morning Challenge with a run, walk or cycle; or raise a mug, take a selfie and make a donation, visit coffee.macmillan.org.uk or call 0330 102 7810.