Dame Vera Lynn Children’s Charity calls on community for help

ADDED: 7.3.2017

Dame Vera Lynn Children’s Charity is calling on schools, community groups and businesses to help it raise £10,000 for a special piece of equipment.

The charity, based in Cuckfield, which supports children under five with cerebral palsy and other motor learning difficulties, wants to buy a ‘magic carpet’ – an interactive device that projects moving images onto surfaces that children can engage and play with through multiple controls, including their own touch. The charity has now launched its #VERA100 campaign – named to mark the Forces’ Sweetheart’s centenary – to raise the funds. Clifford Dann Estate Agents in Ditchling is the first company to get involved, having organised a coffee morning and prize draw at their office on March 8, to win two tickets to the Dame Vera Lynn Tribute concert at the London Palladium on March 18.

Andrew Worrell, from Clifford Dann, said: “As a parent I think the work the charity does is essential. “The magic carpet will give the children a great way to use all their senses to interact with the world around them.” Nikki Cannon, the charity’s community fundraiser, added: “We are extremely grateful for Clifford Dann’s involvement and hope this announcement will encourage more businesses and community groups to work with us. “People can get involved in whatever way they like, from holding a cake sale, to having a dress down day at work or even organising a quiz. Every penny raised will go directly to the #VERA100 campaign so we can buy our magic carpet. “This equipment enables children to enter an exciting virtual world where they can feed the fish in a pond, scatter leaves in the air and play with the stars. “In addition to our hands-on early intervention service, we also want to give our children the means to start accessing the world outside and by having a magic carpet, this engages the children - they are having fun and learning to do things they might not otherwise ever be able to.”

The Weald Theatre Group has also donated £100 from money raised at its annual panto. For more information call 01444 473274 or email nikki.cannon@dvlcc.org.uk 2017 also marks an exciting chapter for the charity as it has moved to a new home – the Dame Vera Lynn Children’s Centre in Cuckfield, West Sussex – and is expanding its services so it can help more children and their families from across the South East. Sessions are being held for families on Mondays 9.30am – noon and 1pm – 3.30pm, and Fridays 9.30am – noon. It is also hosting drop-in coffee mornings on 21st and 28th February from 10 – 11.30am with the sensory bus.