Save The Children

Save The Children

by Lisa De Silva

Celebrating their 50th anniversary, the Burgess Hill branch of Save the Children divulge details of their rich fundraising history, and how you could get involved with volunteering and shaping the future of the organisation.

This year the Burgess Hill & District branch of Save the Children celebrate 50 years of helping to make a difference to the most vulnerable children in the world. Whether it’s organising the annual fundraising event, or raising awareness through local talks and activities, members are helping to create positive change in the lives of defenceless children.

What’s more, they are actively seeking new volunteers to help this important cause. Save the Children has been helping to alleviate child poverty since 1919, by providing food, medical care, shelter and education. It is estimated that 3.7 million children in the UK and 1 billion children worldwide, are currently living in poverty. This puts them at greater risk of disease and malnutrition, reduces their chance of a good education and increases their risk of physical violence and child labour.

There is much to be gained for those able to offer a small amount of time. “Getting involved is not only fun, but it’s a great way to use your skills, or develop new ones,” explains Chair, Linda Khoury. “Everyone is good at something. It might be talking on the telephone, accounts, or helping with publicity, we’ve all got something we can offer.”

The group meets around six times a year and the main objective is to plan and organise the annual fundraising event. “We’re a friendly and supportive group and organising the annual fundraiser is really enjoyable,” says Linda. “Our latest event raised over £4,000 and was held at the Sussex County Cricket Club. Over dinner, a group of the cricketers, along with players from Brighton & Hove Albion Football Club, regaled us with amusing  stories and anecdotes from their careers. We would like to say thank you to all those who have supported us over the years.”

Past events have included a casino night, an Abba tribute evening and a fashion show, but the team would love some new volunteers with fresh ideas. Linda, along with volunteers Lara, Pat and Marion, have all been involved in the Burgess Hill branch for over 30 years and feel it’s important to recruit some new members to take on the challenge and continue the good work.

Members also get to hear guest speakers from Save the Children explain how the money raised is helping to improve the lives of the poorest children both in the UK and worldwide. And if you’re a fan of public speaking, there’s also the chance to go out and talk about the work of Save the Children to interested local groups and organisations.

“Getting involved really widens your knowledge of the world and gives you the satisfaction of knowing that you are helping these vulnerable children,” Linda tells me.

So, if you have a small amount of time and are interested in volunteering, please call Linda on 07882 931725 or email lindakhoury@hotmail.co.uk

Photographs: Ben White / Dario Bosio / Guilhem Alandry / Save the Children