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The 2.6 Challenge

A week today, the 26th April, is 2.6 Challenge day!

This was the day millions would have ben raised for UK charities via the London Marathon. Instead, people throughout the UK are invited to do something, with a 2.6 theme to raise money for their favourite charities.

We’d love you to support Charity Link and there are lots of ideas on the main 2.6 challenge website (you’ll find us listed as Leicester Charity Link on the JustGiving link and as Charity Link on the Virgin Money link).

We’d love to hear your creative ways of getting involved and your photos from the day. Or you may simply like to donate £2.60 – and you can of course donate via usual methods if you prefer.

 

 

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The LeicestershireLive There With You Fund

The LeicestershireLive There With You Fund, launched by the Leicester Mercury and LeicestershireLive today (14th April 2020), is a charitable fund which issues emergency grants of up to £300 to Leicestershire residents in a position of exceptional hardship caused by the coronavirus pandemic. The fund will be administered Charity Link.

All funds donated to the There With You Fund will have a positive and immediate impact on the lives of Leicestershire residents. It is dedicated solely to relieving poverty and easing financial hardship for Leicester and Leicestershire residents directly impacted by the coronavirus and will help to provide essential items, including food vouchers, utilities, cookers, fridges (for storing food and medicine), washing machines, microwaves, household goods, beds, bedding and school uniforms.

For regular updates on the difference the There With You Fund is making please visit the LeicestershireLive website and social media pages, the Leicester Mercury and our own social media pages.

The Fund was launched on the back of a £96,000 grant from the Randal Charitable Foundation, which has an unwavering vision that is to save lives, help the socially disadvantaged and improve the quality of life for those in need in the UK and around the world.

A Trustee of the Foundation said: “The speed at which the Covid-19 pandemic has spread is something that has taken everyone by surprise, and has turned all of our lives upside down.
This has inevitably affected some people in our communities more than others, which is why the There With You Fund is such a great idea”.

Those who are working with vulnerable people experiencing hardship can apply for support – for details click here

The launch of the There Will You Fund is a fantastic opportunity for the community – many of whom may not have previously known of Charity Link’s work in Leicestershire – to pull together to help provide essential items to those in need during this period of crisis.

Charity Link’s own fundraising efforts also continue. It is only through the generous support of Charity Link’s work directly that it is possible for us to distribute funds and to make such a difference in these very difficult times.

Our dedicated Casework team will continue to work with referring agencies, assess applications for help and liaise with clients to ensure they receive the essential items they so desperately need. Our Casework team will also continue to support those in our community, finding funding for those who need larger scale support and find themselves in crisis and hardship not as a result of the Covid-19 crisis.

Thanks for your continued support.

 

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An important message for our referrers…

Please be assured we are open and able to receive your applications during the Coronavirus crisis.

We have implemented remote working, with only minimal staff within the office to comply with social distancing regulations and to protect the safety and well-being of our team but we are still here and still ready to help!

We recommend that you use our online application form, as this does not need to be completed face-to-face with your clients. All details can be obtained over the phone and it has the advantage of not requiring a client’s signature.

For more details click here.

Thank you and stay safe.

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Leicestershire 3 Peaks Challenge Update

In light of the Covid-19 situation we wanted to update you with regards to our key annual fundraising challenge, our Leicestershire 3 Peaks – due to take place on Sunday 27th September.

At present we are hoping that the challenge will still go ahead as planned.

We will monitor the situation, Government advice, country park policy etc. over the coming weeks.

We are delaying the opening of registrations until May, when we will re-assess the situation (if necessary there are options, such as slightly delaying the Challenge until October).

In the meantime you can read the event information pack here to find out what it is all about.

Further updates will be posted here in our news section, on social media, and on the dedicated Leicestershire 3 Peaks Challenge area of our website.

We do hope you will put / leave the challenge in your diary – your support for this fundraising event will be needed more than ever. We also hope it will give you a positive focus over the weeks when our lives are so disrupted.

If safe to do so you can still walk / run as part of your training. The free aerobic and fitness classes that many instructors are posting online will also help to get you fit and ready for the 16 mile challenge.  Or why not take part in our ‘Climb Everest’ Challenge in preparation!

Thanks for your support.

 

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Climb Mount Everest to help local people in need during the crisis

As we all know things have changed out of all recognition over these last couple of weeks:​

⦁ Many people are confined to their homes.​
⦁ Charity fundraising events and challenges have been cancelled. We are expecting a loss of income of at least 50% due to the Covid-19 crisis.​
⦁ People can’t get out to the gym or undertake a lot of their usual fitness activities.​
⦁ It is vital that Charity Link is able to continue to support local people in need at this time of crisis….​

So…combining all these aspects we are introducing our ​

‘Ain’t No Mountain High Enough’ Climb Mount Everest Stair Climb Challenge! ​

⦁ Get motivated​
⦁ Keep healthy, get fit​
⦁ Help ensure we can continue to provide the basics in life that we all deserve to local people in need by getting sponsored​
⦁ Help spread the word of our work by sharing your efforts on social media! ​

All you have to do is climb Mount Everest!! ​

Mount Everest is 29,029 ft high ( or 8,848 meters). It’s calculated it takes 58,070 steps to get to the summit, or based on 15 steps on a flight of stairs, that’s 3,871 times up the stairs!

Are you up for the challenge!

Every £10 raised will  help to provide £50 of essential support for people in need during the Covid-19 crisis.

Full details at www.charity-link.org/climb-everest 

 

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Better IT lends support

We are hugely grateful to Dave Nicholls and the team at Better IT (a Proud Business Supporter Club member) who is kindly setting up the Charity Link team to work remotely during this crisis period.

Whilst we continue to have skeleton staff actually in the office, it is essential to keep staff levels limited as part of our contingency plan in case any team members do have the virus – with our key aim being that whatever happens we are able to keep our services running at this critical time to ensure we can get help to those who need it, when they need it. ​

We are hugely grateful to Better IT for offering this support free of charge.​

Dave and the team have been setting numerous other clients up to work remotely (over 300 last week!) to ensure businesses can move out of the office and work efficiently and safely from home.​
Better IT have kindly offered to donate funds in support of our work when businesses access their remote working service over the coming weeks:​

⦁ There is a one off cost for setting up a company (of any size) to work remotely (free corporate anti-virus protection is provided for home PCs ) ​
⦁ The company then pays per user per month (no minimum contract length) ​
⦁ Better IT will make a donation to us each time a new business uses their Remote Working service of 50% of the set up charge.
⦁ In addition to this initial donation, Better IT will then donate 25% of the monthly fee to Charity Link. Due to our unique way of working, every £10 donated via this scheme will help to feed a family for a week! ​

So if you need help with your IT have a chat with Dave and the team and if you take advantage of their remote working services, you’ll do so knowing that you are also helping to provide essentials, such as food, to local people in need.​

(To help in these unprecedented times, Better IT is also offering every UK company free access to their online training portal which contains a series of short videos. Information on working from home, working collaboratively and looking after your mental health is included. Simply email training@better-it.uk and fill in a form to get 30 days free access).​

 

For more information:

For more information about Better-IT & Home Working, please visit: https://www.better-it.uk/working-from-home/

To get 30 days free access to the Better-IT online training portal, please visit: https://www.better-it.uk/free-training/

 

 

 

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New campaign launched

Thank you so much to everyone who has been keen to lend their support. We can’t tell you how much we appreciate it.

These are unprecedented times for everyone and we – like most – are having to constantly review and change the way that we are working. It remains, as ever, our passion that we are here to provide the essential support needed by the most vulnerable people in our community.

As such, we have set up a new campaign page for those who would like to and are able to offer a financial gift to help others in need. Every penny really does make a difference.

Due to our unique way of working, every £10 donated will help to provide £50 of essential items / every £10 will help to feed a family for a week.

Thank you and we hope you and your family are keeping well.

To donate visit www.justgiving.com/campaign/charitylink

or you can donate in any of the usual ways here.

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Ways you can help at this difficult time

We hope you and your loved ones are keeping safe and well.​

Thanks to everyone who has sent us messages of support this week.​

The team are working as always to help and support those who need us and we are working on procedures to help ensure we can meet the expected uplift in demand for our services over the coming weeks and months.​

Ways you can help:​

[**Edit **  Due to changes in Government advice, we are unfortunately no longer able to take donations of food]** Donate food. We will distribute items donated to local food banks and community shops (long-life foods such as rice, pasta, tea, coffee, cereal, long-life milk, tinned fish, vegetables and fruit are perfect. No perishables please). Whilst we’d normally love to say a huge thank you in person, you can simply drop items in the box in our office reception on Millstone Lane without needing to see anyone. But we are very grateful! ​

Martin Lewis (Money Saving Expert) has set up a pot of money to support charities helping in this crisis and we are applying for a grant. If you hear of other such pots of money which we may not be aware of please do let us know (better to hear 10 times than not at all!) Email rachel.markham@charity-link.org​

If you are at home and having a de-clutter over the coming weeks and you find forgotten and unwanted gifts, if you think they may be suitable for a future tombola or raffle please do save them for us. (Unfortunately, due to logistics and as often needs are very specific, we do not take donations of unwanted furniture and white goods).​

Keep positive and keep in mind our future events – we are going to need your support more than ever! Stick our Leicestershire 3 Peaks Challenge in your diary (hopefully going ahead on the 27th September) as a goal and get out in the fresh air and do some walking in preparation. We very much hope our Barn Dance at Bawdon Lodge Farm will go ahead too (12th September) – something to really look forward to! ​

If you know anyone who may be struggling financially over the coming weeks and months, please do share details of Charity Link. We are here to help people get over crisis situations (including if there are delays in accessing benefits after a change in circumstances) and for those in long term financial hardship.​

And of course we really appreciate any monetary donations at this time. It’s not going to be an easy time. We are expecting a huge rise in need at the same time as a significant fall in fundraising income. If you can lend your support, now or in the coming weeks, we – as always – would be so grateful – www.charity-link.org/donate 

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Coronavirus statement

Firstly, we hope that you and your family are well.

We are facing unprecedented times.

The coming weeks are going to be extremely challenging.

As we are learning, things can change on a week by week, or even daily basis. However, as it stands, there are no recommendations by Government to close businesses unless it becomes absolutely necessary and we’d like to reassure you that we are very much still here and open for business.

As a public facing service organisation supporting the most vulnerable people in the community we are passionate about keeping our services open and we anticipate that as the Coronavirus becomes more widespread we’ll be needed more than ever. We aim to be here to support this need as much as possible. Therefore, currently our services are open as usual, whilst we also balance the health and safety of our team and wider stakeholder groups.

We will continue to follow Governmental advice and keep in touch with you.

We do, more than ever, appreciate your support.