Macmillan Cancer Support predicts £20,000,000 coffee morning shortfall

A cancer charity is warning it faces a £20million black hole in its funding at a time when its services are needed more than ever.

Macmillan Cancer Support’s annual coffee morning usually sees 200,000 people taking part but, due to the coronavirus pandemic, it’s predicting sign-ups to be down by more than two-thirds this year.

The flagship event could end up raising less than a third of the £27.5 million collected last year which would lead to 80,000 cancer patients missing out on support from a nurse.

Claire Rowney, from Macmillan, said it was ‘one of the biggest crises in living memory’ and comes at a time when they are anticipating a ‘tsunami of demand’ this autumn.

She added: ‘Macmillan relies on donations to provide care and support for 1.9 million people affected by cancer every year – and sadly this support could be at risk without income from events like Coffee Morning.

‘People with cancer need us more than ever. There has never been a more terrifying time in recent history to receive a diagnosis as people face potential disruption or delays to treatment, amid an increased risk of infection to the coronavirus.’

Coffee morning events usually take place in cafes, shops, schools, offices and hospitals around the UK every September.

Due to the pandemic, the charity changed the format for the first time in 30 years and is encouraging people to take part virtually or in a socially distanced way.

Macmillan cancer charity facing ?20 million drop in fundraising

200,000 people usually take part in the coffee morning (Picture: Macmillan Cancer Support)

But many are assuming it is not happening at all this year, the charity said, which is leading to the huge loss of income.

Several large-scale fundraising events such as the London Marathon have also been cancelled – adding to the charity’s difficulties.

Bosses say they have ‘never needed the public’s support more’ as they’ve seen services like a specialist helpline inundated with requests for support.

Since the start of the pandemic many people living with cancer have seen their treatments changed, postponed or cancelled.

This backlog, combined with a possible second wave of coronavirus cases and the regular winter pressures, has been called a ‘perfect storm’ which could overwhelm the charity’s resources.

Celebrity supporter Martin Clunes is among those urging people to get involved to try to prevent the shortfall being as bad as feared.

He said: ‘Coffee Morning has become a British institution over the past 30 years. It’s a day where the country comes together to give back to Macmillan and to help ensure this support can continue for people with cancer.

‘Please give or do whatever you can this Coffee Morning to help this brilliant charity to weather this difficult time.’

 

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