When it comes to significant events which substantially support charities, the London Marathon must be one of the most significant. So many of the runners and joggers who haul themselves around the capital do so not to clinch a personal best but to support a great cause.
The London Marathon is just one of the many events that have been postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and this impacts on many charities and community groups. In our local area, the Greenwich & Bexley Hospice is facing a challenging future because of its inability to bring in funds at this time.
With 17 shops which usually generate income to support the Hospice currently closed, there has been a sharp fall in the day to day backing that keeps the Hospice open. However, the postponement of the London Marathon, until October 4th, means a lot of money which would have been earmarked for this time of year cannot be claimed.
At the same time, the Hospice is dealing with a lot more people. In April, it was announced that the average number of patients being cared for had risen to close to 700, which is a big jump on an average of 400 people. It costs more than £23,000 per day to provide care, and with two-thirds of this money provided by local fundraising, the Hospice is looking for support in other ways.
People are doing what they can to support causes they believe in
The 2.6 Challenge, organised by the people behind the London Marathon, has brought some money in. However, it would be wrong to think that this was a suitable replacement for one of the most recognisable charity events of the year.
The Hospice released a statement, saying; “At Greenwich & Bexley Community Hospice we are here for some of the most vulnerable people in our community. The high impact of Covid-19 means we are needed now, more than ever. Our nurses and doctors are stepping forward, ready to do whatever it takes to ensure those on our Inpatient Unit, in Queen Elizabeth Hospital, and those that are being cared for in their own homes, continue to receive the highest quality, compassionate care and support that we can give.”
Many are looking to support healthcare providers any way they can
The Hospice has acknowledged the local community has already been fantastic in providing a considerable level of support. Some people have sent in treats to acknowledge the fantastic work carried out by healthcare professionals, and other people have donated protective equipment. Everything helps, and plays a part in ensuring patients receive the best level of care possible.
Chief executive Kate Heaps said; “Without our charity shops, or our loyal local supporters raising money for us through events, we are expecting a huge shortfall in funding over the coming months, we are likely to be down at least £1m over the next two months. This is at the very time when our nurses, doctors and other staff will be needed more than ever – as the health service faces its biggest challenge.”
There are many fantastic reasons to enjoy life in Greenwich, but the sense of community is integral. Anyone who can spare time or money, and who is looking for a great local cause, should consider the Greenwich & Bexley Hospice.
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