Coronavirus: Romford charity in call for community support as Covid-19 pandemic hits fundraising

Mitchell and his mum Kristel. Picture: Kristel Huth

Mitchell and his mum Kristel. Picture: Kristel Huth - Credit: Archant

A Romford charity that helps families affected by a childhood cancer is fighting to stay open after it saw about half its income dry up when the pandemic hit.

Kristel Huth set up Mitchell’s Miracles in 2013 after her seven-year-old son lost his life to neuroblastoma eight years ago.

The small team raise awareness of the signs and symptoms of the disease because early detection can mean a greater chance of survival. They also support hundreds of families with small grants to help them through the financial burden of having a child in hospital.

But the lockdown meant staff could no longer take part in their usual fundraising activities, which raised around £50,000 for the organisation last year.

Kristel said: “The pandemic has really affected us. April and May are usually busy months with lots of events that would’ve brought in funds. But they all had to be cancelled.

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“Just being out there shaking buckets brings in a lot for us and we haven’t been able to do that.

“All the small charities support each other and I know a lot who are on the verge of closing. I’ve furloughed staff and don’t know when I can bring them back yet.

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“It’s going to be very difficult, especially if we have a second wave. Grants available to charities need to get to us more quickly otherwise we are going to see a lot closing down.”

She added that the charity requires community support for fundraising.

“We are relying on the public and the community. We have got so many good supporters - donating goods and doing online raffles.

“It is really uncertain at the moment and I am just going to remain postiive and that is all you can do. We are only a little charity but we do deliver big.”

But she is determined to continue to give financial support to families of a child in hospital with neuroblastoma, adding: “Providing we have still got enough reserves, we will still provide our grants to the families.”

Anyone who wishes to donate to the charity can do so by clicking on donate buttons at or on the charity’s Facebook page.

Cheques can also be sent to the charity’s office at Lambourne House, 7th Floor, Suite B, Western Road, Romford, London, RM1 3LD.

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