Christmas 2020

Our response to the covid-19 crisis



Christmas won’t be the same for anyone this year. For Harrogate Brigantes Rotary Club it means no Christmas Grotto in Asda. So, instead of raising money this festive season Brigantes are giving a little away. They have raised a Christmas fund totalling £8,600. Of this £2,200 is going to international causes and £6,400 to local charities and people in need.
Overseas we are supporting Shelterbox with their continuing disaster relief efforts and sending funds to the Rotary Club of Himalayan Gurkhas in Kathmandu to help alleviate starvation in some of Nepal’s remote valleys caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. 
Locally many organisations are doing more with less than ever before to respond to unprecedented levels of need. The following are receiving a Brigantes’ “present” to help them a little through the next few difficult months
Wellspring Therapy whose counselling service is in greater demands than ever before as stress levels increase; 
Carer’s Resource which provides support to carers of all ages and is currently so much in demand that it has set up a special COVID-19 Emergency Fund to asssit carers who according to Claire Macini “are exhausted and worn out and haven’t been able to take any breaks whatsoever in the last six months.”
The Harrogate Easier Living Project  (HELP) ‘Help at Home’ initiative which supports people who are unable to undertake work themselves, and  cannot afford to pay a tradesperson or do not have a network of family or friends to support them. According to Frances Elliot, Chief Executive of HELP, Brigantes’ funding “will help keep our trusty and indispensable work vans on the road for another year”  
Supporting Older People (SOP) a charity aiming to alleviate the loneliness and isolation often experienced by older people living on their own; 
Horticap, to assist in the fitting out of their new kitchen which will enable them to enhance their income-generating potential in support of their workers team, all of whom have some sort of disability. 
Additional donations are also going to the Harrogate branch of Parkinsons UK, Dementia Forward, and Yorkshire Air Ambulance to support their essential work in the area.
But it’s not just about money. Brigantes is also working with Asda, and raiding our own commercial stocks to put together some Christmas packages for some of the clients, both young and old, of the charities we are supporting. 
But, of course, funding is essential and Brigantes President David Hayes explains how the money has been raised:  “All this is possible only through the generosity of those who have supported our fund-raising efforts and helped us to give away some £18,000 for Covid relief since the start of the pandemic. I should like to say a very big thank you to them all: members of the public who have supported our new ventures such as the Lockdown Poetry Competition and our virtual trek up Everest; visitors to the Valley Gardens who have given at the Wishing Well; Club members who have made donations including those in lieu of what they would have spent on club meetings and meals; and the families and friends of members. 

Have a happy and safe Christmas !

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