Surprise for very special Worlingham couple who have raised over £100,000

Thank you!: Celebrating £100,000 raised by Michael and Sylvia Porter for the Norfolk Deaf Children's Society. Thank you!: Celebrating £100,000 raised by Michael and Sylvia Porter for the Norfolk Deaf Children's Society.

Derek James
Monday, August 4, 2014
9:36 AM

They are a couple who, thanks to you, have helped to improve the lives of hundreds of young deaf people across Norfolk for more than 30 years – Michael and Sylvia Porter sell picture postcards and have raised an astonishing £100,000.

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Michael and Sylvia Porter with their thank-you gifts after raising £100,000 for the Norfolk Deaf Children's Society.Michael and Sylvia Porter with their thank-you gifts after raising £100,000 for the Norfolk Deaf Children's Society.

More than £20,000 of it has come from readers of the Evening News, the Eastern Daily Press and, more recently, Let’s Talk, who have been sending me their postcards so I can pass them on to the Porters who live at Worlingham, near Beccles.

The couple were in for a shock when they turned up at the annual meeting of the society recently to be presented with a glass bowl, a bouquet of flowers and this photograph of the children saying thank-you to Michael and Sylvia for all they have done to help them since 1981.

“This came as a complete surprise. We were astounded and never expected anything like this,” said Michael. “It was lovely,” added Sylvia.

To be precise, the grand total raised now stands at £102,500 and every penny of that goes to the society and the wonderful work it does for deaf children across the county.

And last month the cards you sent to me raised another £323.22.

“We couldn’t have done this without the support of your readers. They are so generous and we want to thank them from the bottom of our hearts,” added Michael.

They have customers all over this country and abroad. Think of a subject – from aeroplanes to zoos – and the chances are that the Porters will know of a collector.

“We would not be able to support deaf children and their families in the way we do without the generous support of Mr and Mrs Porter and the people who send them their postcards,” said the society’s Karen Park.

“Over 2012/13, we provided deaf children with grants towards home computers to help them with their education. Some of the older children have received grants to buy mobile phones to keep them in touch with family and friends via texting and we are now funding special iPads as well,” added Karen.

Times have certainly changed since Michael and Sylvia first starting raising money to buy phonic ears in the early 1980s.

In addition to the equipment, the society also funds regular activities and events which enable deaf children and their families to get together, share experiences and support each other.

The work carries on so please keep sending your postcards to me. You can drop them off – marked for my attention – at Prospect House, Rouen Road, Norwich NR1 1RE, or call the Porters on 01502 714352 and they may be able to collect them.

Once again... thank you.

The Porters hope to be at a big Stamp and Postcard Fair organised by the Norfolk & Norwich Philatelic Society at the Hewett School, Norwich, tomorrow from 10am to 4.30pm.

There will be about 20 dealers present along with various stalls and displays.

If there is anything you want to know about stamps and cards and the fascinating history surrounding them, then why not pop along for a couple of hours? It’s well worth a look.

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