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Sight loss charity Beacon launches urgent appeal during coronavirus pandemic

By Dayna Farrington | Wolverhampton | Coronavirus | Published:

A Black Country-based sight loss charity has launched an urgent appeal for donations to support their services in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.

Beacon Centre chief executive Lisa Cowley

The Beacon Centre, based off Wolverhampton Road East, has been supporting people with sight loss in the region for more than 145 years.

But the charity is facing a funding crisis – after having to temporarily suspend a number of key activities due to measures brought in by the Government to help slow and prevent the spread of Covid-19.

As a result, Beacon is currently losing more than £15,000 a week. But the charity still needs to provide a number of other new and expanded services during this time – including expanding its talking news and telephone befriending services during the coronavirus crisis, so that it can reach hundreds more vulnerable people over the coming weeks.

The charity has now launched its Beacon Crisis Appeal – and is asking people to give £5 to help it continue to support people living with sight loss across the Black Country and Staffordshire.

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, Beacon Centre chief executive Lisa Cowley said: "We have been here supporting people with sight loss for over 145 years, but the people we help need us more than ever right now and many of them are afraid that we won’t be there for them in the future.

"We know all of us are facing challenges in these uncertain times, but those with sight loss who rely on us are among those most at risk of loneliness and isolation.

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"The changes we are rightly – but regrettably – having to make are having a huge impact upon us.

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"Our wonderful staff and volunteers are doing everything they can to ensure we can continue to support them in new ways, but we need help from members of the public as well.

"We have been part of the local community for years and we want to be here for many more."

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Ms Cowley added: "That is why we have launched our Beacon Crisis Appeal and calling on people to give £5 – or whatever they can afford – so that we can continue to support people living with sight loss across the Black Country and Staffordshire.”

The services the Beacon Centre has had to temporarily suspend during the coronavirus crisis include its day services in Sedgley and Stourbridge, while its seven retail shops have also closed.

To donate to the appeal, text BEACONCRISIS (all one word) to 70085. Texts cost £5 plus one standard rate message.

Other ways to support the charity include visiting www.beaconvision.org/urgent – which includes the opportunity to join one of the charity's virtual events, such as the 10,000 Mile Challenge or sending someone an e-card with a donation.

For more details about fundraising opportunities with the Beacon Centre, email fundraising@beaconvision.org

Dayna Farrington

By Dayna Farrington
Senior reporter based at Wolverhampton

Reporter for the Express & Star based at Wolverhampton.

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