The coronavirus pandemic has hit everyone hard, particularly local charities who rely on fundraising events to bring in the much needed financial support. Events such as fun runs, community raffles and sporting challenges have gone by the wayside and charities have had to turn to online and digital marketing to garner support and continue to raise awareness and funds in a highly competitive space.
A research report undertaken in 2020 by Pro Bono Economics, an independent charity, says the coronavirus crisis could cost a £6.4bn loss of income for charities and with almost 170,000 charities in the UK, competition for funding is fierce. According to the National Council for Voluntary Organisations the vast majority are small charities and they are especially exposed to the crisis, with nearly two-thirds reporting they have already made significant cuts to services and one in eight expecting to go to the wall within months.
In Ross-on-Wye, the Lions and Rotary Clubs are at the heart of fundraising in the local community and over the years, have held regular events to raise vital funds for local small charities including Community First Responders, St Michael’s Hospice, Enviroability and The Men’s Shed. They also regularly work with community organisations like the Ross Good Neighbours as well as the NHS, delivering prescriptions to isolated people as well as co-ordinating teams of volunteers to ensure the success of the ongoing vaccine roll out to hundreds of vulnerable people.
In a bid to raise money for local charities, The Ross Rotary and Lions Clubs are holding an online Virtual Valentine’s Balloon Race and they would love everyone to show their support and join in. You can buy your environmentally-friendly virtual balloon in advance for just £3 and the competition will start on 14th February with the winner announced at midday on 19th February. A cash prize of £100 is up for grabs with a smaller amount of £10 per day prize money for the ‘balloon’ that travels the furthest each day. More information is available at www.balloonrace.com/rossonwye where you can buy your entry and do your bit to support the community.