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Who we are, what we do, why it matters and how we couldn’t do it without you

Updated: Jul 11, 2023

Hi Sunshine News readers,


So the next time I dare to comment on the mild weather, please feel free to email in and tell me to pipe down!


Seems I have jinxed us all to rain and snow and with colder temperatures set to return next week, I think I’ll just keep my weather optimism to myself from now on. Despite my dodgy weather forecasting, love of puns and Mam jokes, we are very fortunate to have gained many more column readers and followers across our social media channels over the past few months so I wanted to thank you all for remaining loyal supporters and welcome those who have recently joined us.


For those new to the charity I thought this might be a good opportunity to tell our readers a little more about who we are, what we do, why it matters and how we couldn’t do it without you.


The Chronicle Sunshine Fund is a registered charity based in Newcastle (Kindly gifted office space and utilities by our friends at Reach Media Plc) covering whole of the North East of England. We aim to improve the lives of children with disabilities and terminal illnesses by providing them with specialist, adapted and bespoke equipment to help them reach their own individual potential as well as dedicated family services.

For such a small charity, our impact truly is great. We are a small team of just 6 (Although we do have some big news for you next week!) and we work tirelessly to provide essential equipment such as powered wheelchairs, adapted bikes and communication aids that enable children with disabilities to participate in activities that might otherwise be impossible.


The equipment we purchase for our children and young adults cannot be funded by any other means and with costs soaring, often into their thousands of pounds, without our small charity these children simply wouldn’t have the items they need. Our family services and events enable social interaction for children with additional needs, their siblings and their parent/carers.


This support network is vital to families who can feel isolated, overwhelmed and incredibly lonely on their journey. We host various play and leisure sessions throughout the year for children and young adults with additional needs as well as parent/carer training sessions, support groups and informal meeting opportunities giving care givers the chance to build their own networks of like minded individuals.


The charity also funds social activities and trips, giving children with disabilities the opportunity to interact with others, make new friends and providing important informal respite opportunities to care givers. We support our families in practical ways in which they need us. We value our families feedback and shape our services to meet their needs, providing services that they want and cannot access elsewhere.


We don’t receive statutory or NHS funding. Chronicle readers, donors and supporters from our region make the magic happen here! Your donations to The Chronicle Sunshine Fund benefit children with disabilities in numerous ways.


You help us purchase specialist equipment enabling children with disabilities to participate in activities they would otherwise be unable to do like sitting at the table with family at meal times, or reaching the science benches at school, improving their physical and mental wellbeing. Your support funds social activities and trips for children with often complex needs, which are designed to help them build friendships, boost their self-esteem and develop new skills.

Your help funds our varied and extensive Family support services and families helpline. We recognise that families of children with disabilities also need support, and your donations can be used to fund services that help families cope with the challenges they face. This includes pre counselling, respite care through events, emotional and practical assistance.


Giving to local charities is important for several reasons. You are supporting your own community addressing local issues and making a positive impact on the lives of people in your area. As a small charity our main expenses are equipment, services and family events.


We are fortunate to have lower overheads than national or international organisations, which means that your donation can go even further. By giving locally, you can ensure that your donation has a direct and immediate impact on those who need it most.


Here at The Chronicle Sunshine Fund we aim to be fully transparent with how and why we spend your donations and the money we raise through local events, Trusts and our weekly digital lottery. And even the smallest donations can make a BIG difference. A £5 donation may seem small, but it can go a long way in a small charity who’s costs are low.

It can help cover essential supplies, recruit and train volunteers, raise awareness about the charity's cause, purchase specialist equipment, and cover core operational costs. Every donation, no matter how little, can help a small charity continue to make a difference in the lives of those they support.


Whether your gift to The Chronicle Sunshine Fund is due to an abseil, bake sale or car boot sale, we are grateful for every penny we receive and we hope that you feel as proud of the work that we do here as we are.


Siobhan

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