Red Cross appealing for help from Derbyshire residents

THE BRITISH Red Cross is appealing for help from the Derbyshire community to help them “build” a new emergency support vehicle to help families affected by fires, floods and other disasters in the county.

Red Cross volunteers use the vehicle, a modified camper van, to care for people affected by these devastating incidents across Derbyshire. Volunteers are called out by Derbyshire Fire and Rescue Service to help families get back on their feet, providing emotional and practical support such as finding somewhere to stay, giving out emergency clothing and even keeping pets fed and watered. Over the last ten years, the vehicle and its volunteers have helped more than 700 families across the county.

Red Cross staff and volunteers need to raise £50,000 for the new vehicle, which is urgently needed to help volunteers continue to run the service in Derbyshire. The organisation is looking for as many schools, businesses, community groups and individuals to get involved as possible by fundraising for different parts of the vehicle, helping the Red Cross to “build” the vehicle piece by piece.

Since the appeal launched last September, the Red Cross has already received generous donations from events and activities that have taken place across the county to fund various vehicle parts.

Alex Gadsby, community fundraiser for the British Red Cross in Derbyshire said: “We’re asking businesses, schools, groups and people from across the county to help us build the vehicle together piece by piece. We have a comprehensive list of items that you can choose from, so whether you aim to raise the £50 needed for a box of children’s toys, or £500 to buy the emergency clothing we keep on board – anything you can contribute will make a real difference.”

Anyone can donate to this appeal, which is running throughout 2011. We can also help people come up with fundraising ideas and have the tools to turn those ideas into cash. Contact Alex Gadsby, community fundraiser, on 0784 321 8078 or email agadsby@redcross.org.uk to make a donation or discuss your fundraising ideas. You can also find out more and donate online at www.redcross.org.uk/derbyshirevehicleappeal.