As well as our main Church project, we also support several other charities with smaller sums, collected during communion services at the church.
The charities supported in 2010 were as follows:
January: Help the Aged
This is an international charity fighting to free older people from poverty, isolation and neglect. They support vulnerable older people in over 50 countries. Their mission is to work for disadvantaged older people. The group carries out research into their needs, campaigns for their rights, and provides vital services. In April 2009 Help the Aged joined with Age Concern to provide a national charity dedicated to improving the lives of older people.
This is a national charity for single homeless people. There are many ways in which Crisis aims to help these people, eg, Crisis Skylight offers a variety of activities for homeless people and the general public; Crisis Christmas opens its doors in 7 centres across the UK over the Christmas period; the Crisis Supportive Housing model provides innovative solutions to homelessness while creating high quality, affordable homes for low-income essential workers, and formerly homeless adults; in addition to many other schemes. Crisis established its first Skylight Learning and Activity Centre outside London – in the North of England, at Newcastle upon Tyne.
The centre, in City House (City Road, NE1 2AF) opened its doors to members in April 2007. Crisis Skylight Newcastle combines free practical and creative workshops and more formal learning opportunities leading to qualifications and employment. Classes include art, singing, jewellery making, digital photography, pottery & ceramics, sculpture, car maintenance, acoustic guitar, IT & jobskills.
March: Action for Children
Action for Children supports and speaks out for the most vulnerable children and young people in the UK. They support families at critical times and with difficult problems. They help find carers for children who can't live with their families. They help vulnerable and excluded young people. They provide specialist help and support for disabled children and in their schools they help children and young people reach their full potential. In 2009 the society celebrated 140 years of helping the UK’s most vulnerable children.
April: Victim Support
Victim Suppport is the national charity for victims and witnesses of crime in England and Wales. This charity gives free and confidential help to victims of crime, their family, friends and anyone else affected. They give information, emotional support and practical help. You don’t have to report a crime to the police to get their help and can get support at any time, whenever the crime happened. They are not a government agency or part of the police. They have centres in the North East of England, in Newcastle, Gateshead, North and South Shields, Blaydon and Sunderland, running and co-ordinating their local services. They run the Witness Service in every criminal court to help people called as witnesses. Their Victim Supportline (0845 30 30 900) gives immediate help over the phone and puts people in touch with their local teams. They also campaign for greater rights for victims and witnesses and to raise awareness.
May: Christian Aid
This is a Christian organisation that insists the world can and must be swiftly changed to one where everyone can live a full life, free from poverty. They work globally to eradicate the causes of poverty, striving to achieve equality, dignity and freedom for all, regardless of faith or nationality. They are part of a wider movement for social justice. They provide urgent, practical and effective assistance where need is great, tackling the effects of poverty as well as its root causes. Their essential purpose is: to expose the scandal of poverty; to help in practical ways to root it out from the world; to challenge and change structures and systems that favour the rich and powerful over the poor and marginalised.
June/July: Alzheimer's Society
This is a membership organisation which works to improve the quality of life of people affected by dementia in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. Many of the 25,000 members have personal experience of dementia, as carers, health professionals or people with dementia themselves, and their experiences help to inform their work. Their branch services include day care and home care for people with dementia, as well as support and befriending services to help partners and families cope with the demands of caring. From Alzheimer's Café's and innovative ‘singing for the brain' sessions, to memory-book projects and group outings, the branches provide both practical support and an essential point of human contact.
August: Benevolence Fund
An emergency hardship fund for immediate distribution to needy cases within the Church and its community. Distributed at the discretion of the Minister.
The Royal National Lifeboat Institution is the charity that saves lives at sea. They provide a 24-hour lifeboat search and rescue service around the coasts of the United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland, as well as a seasonal lifeguard service on many of the busiest beaches in England and Wales. The RNLI also works to promote sea and beach safety. The RNLI has different classes of lifeboats for different types of job. It's all in a day's work for an RNLI lifeguard to be involved in rescues, first aid, and give lots of advice -. They are the experts' on advice on how to stay safe on or near the water. They are also always ready to help in flooding emergencies at home and abroad.
October: Butterwick Hospice
Mary Butterwick OBE, lost her husband John to cancer in March 1979. At that time there was no support network in the North East for those suffering from life limiting illnesses and no real advice and support for the family they left behind. Working as a volunteer in her local hospital taught Mary a lot about the needs of terminally ill patients and a visit to the new St Christopher's Hospice that had opened in London - the first of its kind - showed Mary a much better way to care for not only the patient but also those close to them. In January 1984 Mary opened the first Palliative Day Care Centre in Stockton on Tees. Today Butterwick Hospice Care helps up to 200 patients and their families each day. Now expanded into a purpose built hospice in Stockton on Tees and another Hospice in Bishop Auckland from where the organisation provides services throughout the North Tees and Durham Dales PCT areas. October 1998 saw the opening of Butterwick House Children's Hospice which provides care and support to families across the North East.
November: British Legion
The Royal British Legion safeguards the welfare, interests and memory of those who are serving or who have served in the Armed Forces. They are one of the UK’s largest membership organisations and recognised as custodians of Remembrance. They also run the annual Poppy Appeal. They help serving and ex-Service personnel and their families. Not just those who fought in the two World Wars, but also those involved in the many conflicts since 1945 and those still fighting today. The Royal British Legion helps people of all ages and backgrounds. To be eligible for their help, you must have served in the Forces for at least 7 days, or be the dependant of someone who has served.
December/January 2011: Macmillan Nurses
For many people affected by cancer, Macmillan nurses are a valued and trusted source of expert information, advice and support - free of charge. There are over 3000 Macmillan nurses across the UK, working both in hospitals and in the community. They are a source of support, helping with all the things that people affected by cancer want and need. It's not only patients who live with cancer, so they also help carers, families and communities| . They guide people through the system, supporting them every step of the way. They fund nurses and other specialist health care professionals| and build cancer care centres|. They rely on supporters for 99% of their income. Without this help they couldn't provide any of the services for people living with cancer.