Make James Smile

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We have recently announced this new appeal via our Social Media – and so far we have received lots of help. James has cerebral palsy, cannot walk or talk and is visually impaired. Recently his mother’s car was stolen outside their house with James’ specialised wheelchair inside. Without it he is severely restricted…

It means the world to him and means he can access the outside world.’ Claire Hall (James’ mother)

By donating via our Bmycharity page, all funds raised will go directly to the Riverwalk School Emergency Fund in to order and pay for the chair. Any potential excess funds will remain with the School which caters for pupils aged 3 -19 who have severe, profound and complex learning needs.

The Living By Giving Trust has also pledged to match pound for pound the first £1,000 raised so your money will go even further!

Please help us today.

Lourdes Floods

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From Sadie Vile, Trustee: “On 20 October 2012, following an extended period of heavy rain in the surrounding area, the River Gave in Lourdes, France overflowed, affecting some hotels and particularly the Domain, the area where the main activities of Lourdes take place.  In the Grotto, the water was about one metre deep, almost level with the top of the altar.  The good news was that no one was injured, thanks largely to good local organisation, and it being the end of the main pilgrimage season, so visitor numbers were fairly low.

After a rapid clean up throughout the Sanctuaries, using earth-movers and high pressure hoses to clear the debris and mud deposited by the water, it could be seen that the tarmac surfaces around the Grotto, and beyond towards the Baths were very badly damaged. The same was true on the Prairie opposite the Grotto, and the bridges within the Domain were also seriously affected.

The estimated cost of all repairs is currently 2.5 million Euros, and the Sanctuary is responsible for about 1.2 million Euros of this.

It was imperative that repairs were started as soon as possible – the surface damage was so bad that it has been very difficult to move people around in wheelchairs, especially towards the Baths, which normally stay open throughout the year.

An appeal was immediately launched, and by the end of November over 500,000 euros had been received by the Sanctuaries.  Initial work focussed on replacing the tarmac from the Esplanade to the Baths, and repairing the central bridge that leads to the Accueil Notre Dame.  The challenge will be to raise the remaining money needed, now that the floods are ‘old news’.

Having met through their volunteer work in Lourdes, the Trustees of the Living by Giving Trust decided to make a small contribution towards the ‘Flood Solidarity’ Appeal, and have donated £100 from our funds, as well as making personal donations.  We are lucky to be able to transfer the funds through a UK-based Lourdes charity who have been amalgamating UK donations in order to minimise the costs of converting the donation to euros.

If anyone reading this wants to contribute, we can advise how to contact the British Hospitalité Trust, who can transfer a UK-based donation and even arrange for the Gift Aid to be claimed if appropriate.”

Stamps

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The Living by Giving Trust was set up to assist as diverse a group of people as was possible, so the Trustees decided that one way to do this was by collecting used stamps. Let us explain more….

Everyone receives letters through the post – especially at Christmas and birthdays. Most will include a nice stamp on the envelope – whether it’s a normal second class stamp or an exciting celebratory stamp. We don’t mind, because various charities will want to collect all kinds of stamps to help support their initiatives.

The Living by Giving Trust has decided to collect used stamps and then send them on to a worthy charity every six months. Each time we will ask our loyal supporters to choose a charity to support, which will mean we can help two different charities a year and reach out to more people in a very simple way.

If would like to be involved, please simply send your used stamps to: Stamps, 2 Skylark Place, St Ives, PE27 5DL. Please make sure that the paper around the stamp is cut as close as possible to it, so it’s not too heavy for you to send. Next month, we’ll then ask our supporters to vote for their favourite charity for us to send them to (please also let us know if you have any suggestions too, below).

Thank you.

Supporting a volunteer

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In 2012, student nurse Emma Stenson, raised money through the Living by Giving Trust so that she could work in Lourdes with disabled and sick children. Emma achieved this by taking part (with a friend) in London field’s aquathlon on the 1st April. It involved a 400m open water swim followed by a 5km run. Emma was then able to work with children for a week in August. Here, Emma writes about this in a very unique way:

When asked to put into words,
Why I wanted to become a children’s nurse,
I found it almost impossible,
It’s an answer you can’t rehearse.

To some it seems quite strange,
A concept they can’t understand,
Why you would want to get up at 5am,
And be someone’s constant helping hand.

But maybe this is because,
The magic just cant be seen,
The moments shared with the children,
To you, on which they lean.

By taking disabled children to Lourdes,
I found my reason to live,
I went from lost and unknowing,
To wanting to nurse so I could give.

Their eyes, they tell a story,
If you look deep enough you can see,
Their little hands that always fit yours,
Whatever their size may be.

The acceptance of their futures,
And bright outlook they always show,
However dark & short it may seem,
An on looker would never know.

For, however sick & poorly they feel,
They always put up a fight,
Showing you how precious life is,
They push with all their might.

They push to see another day,
To touch the lives of many,
As anyone lucky enough to meet them,
Would lovingly give their last penny.

So, to those who ask me to explain,
Why i want to become a nurse,
I’ve decided to ask them this question,
That, I can rehearse.

Why would you not jump at the honour,
Of being that helping hand,
To a child whose body is so sick,
But whose heart you can understand?

Their time on earth is precious,
So whatever you manage to give,
Is a purpose to your life,
That gives you the reason to live.

(c) Emma Stenson

To find out more about our projects, visit our page here.

Beatrice Rogers – Team Bea

The Living by Giving Trust is deeply saddened to hear of the death of Beatrice Rogers. Those who knew Baby Bea and who saw the loving care she received from her family were inspired and enriched. Our deepest sympathy to Bea’s parents, sisters, wider family and friends. As a charity we were privileged to help Baby Bea, and our support for “Team Bea” will continue to help her family treasure her memory forever.

For more information or to donate to Team Bea, please see: All about Team Bea