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Charities hit by income drop and increase demand for services

PUBLISHED: 23:37 20 April 2020 | UPDATED: 08:52 21 April 2020

Break charity shop in Diss. Picture: Sophie Smith

Break charity shop in Diss. Picture: Sophie Smith

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Norfolk charities have revealed how they have seen a significant impact from a reduction in donation income during the coronavirus crisis.

BBC Radio Norfolk presenter Chrissie Jackson (third from left), patron of Home-Start Norfolk, with Dr Sarah Taigel, Helen Brown, Ray McCune, Fiona Hall and Tanya O'Leary Picture: Mark BullimoreBBC Radio Norfolk presenter Chrissie Jackson (third from left), patron of Home-Start Norfolk, with Dr Sarah Taigel, Helen Brown, Ray McCune, Fiona Hall and Tanya O'Leary Picture: Mark Bullimore

A triple whammy of fundraising affected by donors being in lockdown, charity shops closed and charitable events being forced to be cancelled has seen dozens of local charities hit by a plunge in income.

At the same time many charities have seen huge increases in demand for their services because of the impact of covid-19.

Sophie Berry, fundraising manager at child bereavement charity Nelson’s Journey, said: “At Nelson’s Journey we are already receiving calls to our support line following deaths related to the virus outbreak with adults seeking guidance around how to support bereaved children and young people.”

The charity is expecting to see a significant increase in demand as children respond to their experiences of grief in the coming months.

Swaffham Lionesses supporting homelessness charity buy many fundraising activities have been hit by coronavirus restrictions. Picture: St Martins Housing TrustSwaffham Lionesses supporting homelessness charity buy many fundraising activities have been hit by coronavirus restrictions. Picture: St Martins Housing Trust

However with a significant reduction in fundraising income, they are concerned for the potential record demand for their service.

Demand for Home-Start Norfolk’s work supporting families facing distress and struggling to cope is expected to increase. But anticipating a large drop in fundraising income, the charity said it will be unable to meet the growing need.

MORE: Income hit charities appeal for supporters to join lockdown challenge

Cruse Bereavement Care Norwich estimate that demand for their service will double over the next year but it too anticipates a big drop in income.

Break is still running its essential services to children and young people, but without the income from shops and fundraising activities, creating a significant income drain.

Sophie Berry from Nelson's Journey. Picture: Neil DidsburySophie Berry from Nelson's Journey. Picture: Neil Didsbury

Age UK Norwich, supporting vulnerable and isolated older people, have seen a dramatic increase in those needing help but without regular fundraising activities.

St Martins Housing Trust is continuing to support homeless people however community fundraising events and regular supermarket collections have had to be cancelled.

Meanwhile the The Benjamin Foundation said services to prevent local youth homelessness are continuing but without their regular fundraising income.

Friend in Deed, is currently unable to operate their care home visiting service. Financial support from care homes has reduced together with a drop in donations meaning overall income has almost halved.

Nelson's Journey recieves a cheque from Mark Loveday of the Last of the Summer Wine. Charity fundrisiing has been hit by coronavirus. Picture: The Last Wine BarNelson's Journey recieves a cheque from Mark Loveday of the Last of the Summer Wine. Charity fundrisiing has been hit by coronavirus. Picture: The Last Wine Bar

And the cancellation of events and the closure of their six shops mean Priscilla Bacon Hospice, which is fundraising to build a desperately needed new specialist care hospice, is examining new ways of replacing the £210,000 they had hoped to raise.

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