Helen Rollason Cancer Charity – CVID-19 Urgent Appeal
Message from Helen Rollason Cancer Charity CEO Kate Alden.
As I'm sure you can imagine, the situation here at the Helen Rollason Cancer Charity is changing every moment. We are doing our best to keep our clients up to date with the services we can provide and our valued supporters, including those who have booked onto our wide array of events, up to date with amended arrangements.
During this time of Covid-19 crisis, cancer is still impacting the lives of countless individuals. We are battling to keep our services running despite most of our income streams slowing or drying up completely.
Therefore I am asking you, our fantastic supporters to help us get through these unprecedented times. We have launched a new online fundraising campaign which you can find by visiting here; https://www.justgiving.com/campaign/covid-19-helpHRCC Alternatively you can call me on my mobile and donate over the phone; 07730 209442.
In the past few days we have adapted our methods to bring them in line with the social distancing Government guidelines by making counselling sessions available via telephone calls or online video calling. Our therapists have been reaching out to isolated clients unable to leave their homes to attend their regular appointments.
This Thursday evening, 26th March at 8.00pm, there will be a 30 minute online Guided Relaxation session being streamed live via the Helen Rollason Cancer Charity Facebook page. Our fantastic volunteer, Maia, who facilitates our Craft Therapy Group is sharing craft ideas to do at home, again via Facebook. These will be hugely beneficial to our clients but can be shared with friends and family too. We are also planning to set up online yoga and Pilates sessions in addition to signposting to other online advice and virtual support groups.
We are determined to continue our work in helping these individuals and we can only do so with the help of voluntary donations. Our income for the next 12 weeks is budgeted at £160,000 yet we receive no NHS or Government funding. Community fundraising events are being cancelled and our flagship events are being postponed.
Of course Covid-19 is at the forefront of all of our minds, but even once it has calmed down, cancer will still be there. On average 1,000 people in the UK will face a cancer diagnosis every day and 450 others will die. Please help us support them, both now during this time of unrest, and in the months and years to come.
Thank you for your generosity during this worrying time. We hope you and your family are safe and well.
Kate Alden
CEO Helen Rollason Cancer Charity
  What's a chatty Chihuahua like me to do now? Visitors cannot come in to see our animals and we cannot hold any fundraising events - my two main subjects of conversation gone. Fortunately our volunteers are always coming up with interesting ideas, like Sharon, a professional seamstress who is sewing washable, pleated face masks in triple layered dense cotton. Jayne is busy knitting 'Rainbow of Hope' car hangings and both items are selling well. The ladies suggest a minimum donation of £2 per item. If interested please phone Jayne on 07720 079370 to place an order.
We may only be a small local charity but we have homed many animals over the past twenty seven years and although life has changed beyond belief, we are still here to help or advise regarding any animal in need. Our hard working ladies and gentlemen exercise and care for the animals every day, with maybe a few extra cuddles. Thank you to all the shops that host our food collection bins or donate food and vegetables from their own stock. More than ever, we are grateful to them and the Public for their continued support. Given a choice, we would ask for kitten food because it is that time of the year again!
We dogs are glad of the lovely weather as we accompany Mum around the garden on her evening rounds and then it's bedtime for all the animals including me, Kenny (the Boss) Chihuahua. Suffolk & Essex Small Animal Welfare, Reg. Charity No.1124029, Stoke Road, Leavenheath, CO6 4PP. Tel: 01787 210888, www.sesaw.co.uk

A letter from the heart of Colchester Zoo to all friends and supporters

St. Andrew's Church, Earls Colne, Lunchtime Recitals 2020
We have all gone through the most difficult and challenging nine weeks of our life. It has been an experience we all hope not to have to repeat again, but it has brought out the best in people from the amazing heroics of the NHS staff, to volunteers giving their time and efforts to help people in need.
The world should be about kindness and we have had a glimpse of this during the pandemic.

I think the word generosity also comes into it and certainly here at the Zoo we have received enormous generosity from hundreds of people from all over the world who have given us the will to survive because of their kindness. You have all been simply marvellous and words will always fail us on how to express what we feel.
We will soon announce the full amount raised and the costs covered by this amount. However, everyone has been so generous in different ways, all are important, we can only repeat what has already been said many times, not only are we extremely grateful but this has gone some way to help us survive.
On a human side it has also been a pick-up tonic, if ever we felt down, wary, depressed or uncertain about the future, you were telling us to go on, telling us to be strong because there will be an end to this horror and importantly there will be a future.
There have been days when we have looked at our animal collection, from our elephants to the meerkats and felt, "What will happen to them if we run out of money? Will we be able to find a good home for them, will they settle down, will we have to face such a horrific and unreal situation ahead of us?". These were very dark days, the days with sleepless nights because of the worry.
The wonderful staff we have here have been simply amazing. They have adapted, they have understood the challenges and they have performed. There is no doubt the Zoo will be eternally grateful to them for their achievement in these dark days.
In some ways they are heroes just like the NHS staff have been, from the most senior specialist to the man who cleans the corridors, the same applies with our staff and a clap for their performance will be well deserved.
We are not yet out of the woods in term of finances, there is perhaps a glimmer of hope as rumours of re-opening are suggested. Perhaps it is a matter of weeks rather than months, this would make survival possible.
We are busy preparing and getting the park ready for this. A massive challenge to ensure we follow the correct procedures and social distancing as best as we can to protect both visitors and staff.
To you, our loyal visitor, we need to explain that it will be a different experience, not the zoo you have enjoyed in the past, something much more low key, but it will be a start and we know that the animals will be very happy to see you back.
Time to close my note now as time is precious to make all the necessary preparations to hopefully open our doors to survival.
We have not yet won the war but we are on top with the battle to survive and whilst the going is extremely tough, we hope to see soon – a light at the end of the tunnel which is called salvation.
To you all, a big thank you and please keep safe.
Best wishes,
Dr DA Tropeano
Managing Zoo Director
      2020 sees our Lunchtime Recitals entering their fifth year and we have a very exciting programme to offer.
We will see the return of the ever popular Lizzie Gutteridge and Aurora Voices who also sang for us just before Christmas. We will be welcoming some new performers too. Kim Peek a ballad singer, the Sokolowski Trio and Malcolm Ball playing the Ondes Marenot.
Thursday 11th June - Kim Peek solo singer accompanied by Edward Preston on piano
Thursday 9th July - Aurora Voices
Thursday 13th August - Sokolowski Trio
Thursday 10th September - Malcolm Ball playing Ondes Martenot accompanied by Peter Humphrey on piano.
Recitals are free (retiring collection) and commence at 1pm. Refreshments available from 12.30pm

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