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Rotary helps out as local charity sees demand double and fundraising fall by £40,000

Canaan Trust – a charity which supports homeless and vulnerable people in Erewash and Broxtowe – has seen demand for its services double since the start of the Covid crisis.  But having to cancel fundraising events like their annual sleepout has left them short of resources to meet local need.

Kevin Curtis, Canaan Trust’s project manager, says this year they will lose up to £40,000 in donations and income.  “Lockdown has meant we have had to cancel all our fundraising events like our hugely successful annual sleep out.  At the same time, demand for our services has rocketed.  Even so, we have pledged to turn no-one away and to respond to every request for help.”

Now, as part of a region-wide Rotary4foodbanks scheme, three local Rotary clubs have stepped in to deliver vital supplies of staple foods to help ensure that no-one in the borough goes hungry. Backed by Long Eaton Rotary, Long Eaton Dawnbreakers and Church Wilne Rotary, they have made the first drop of over 500 items – including coffee, porridge, sweetcorn plums and custard – to the Canaan Trust’s Jordan House in Main Street, Long Eaton.

The Rotary4Foodbanks scheme, run entirely by volunteers, is an East Midlands and South Yorkshire initiative which pools funds and bulk buys staple food supplies at wholesale prices which it distributes to foodbanks across the region.  By the end of July it will have distributed food with a wholesale value of around £100,000 to around 50 foodbanks in the region.  It has plans to extend the scheme as demands on foodbanks continue to rise.

 Says Canaan’s Kevin Curtis: “All of these products have immediately gone into the Trust’s food aid parcels being distributed to individuals and families across the borough.  The Rotary4foodbanks scheme will make a real difference to the lives of many of those most in need in our community.”

It is not the first time that local Rotarians have stepped in to help the Canaan Trust. In the past year alone the Dawnbreakers helped the Trust purchase a number of special shelters, known as Iglous, to provide street homeless with shelter from the adverse weather while sleeping out as the trust works with them to find them safe and secure accommodation.

Rotary4foodbanks is asking the public to support its programme and has set up a just giving page:

You can support Rotary for Foodbanks through our JustGiving page

Donations direct to the Canaan Trust can be made at https://www.justgiving.com/canaantrust/donate

The Canaan Trust

2020 sees the Canaan Trust mark 25 years of supporting and caring for the homeless and the

vulnerable from across the local communities in Erewash and Broxtowe. Operating 24-7, 365 days a year the Trust’s services and support are always accessible enabling any individual or family to obtain help when they are in crisis or in need. Even during the period of ‘lock-down’ the Trust has remained fully operational and accessible. During the Covid pandemic the Trust has seen an over 100% increase in the calls for its help and support from the same period last year.

The Trust is dependent on charitable donations to enable it to provide the support and care it delivers to those in need. One of the implications of the lock-down has been that the Trust has had to cancel all of its fund raising events and charitable collections. These cancellations, for example our annual Sleep Out, will result in the Trust losing up to £40,000 in charitable donations and income. Effectively for the Trust, as the demand for its help has increased exponentially simultaneously the funding to meet that demand has been reduced significantly.
The Trust has determined that regardless of its current charitable income the Trust will turn no one away and will continue to proactively respond to all requests for support.

It is in this context that the support offered and provided by Rotary4Foodbanks has been welcomed, appreciated and valued.

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