An East Midlands charity that offers free holidays to families and children facing life-changing and limiting illnesses is faced with having to delay arranging trips due to a shortfall in funding.
Derb-based charity me&dee needs £27,000 or faces being unable to provide urgently-needed short breaks for young families in need.
That is how far the organisation is from reaching a target of £150,000 which will be enough to buy a bespoke lodge on the Derby/Nottingham border.
The charity is up against the clock and has just a few weeks to raise the funds needed, and there is a very real prospect it will need to disappoint some of the young families on its waiting list. To stop this happening, me&dee must raise the final £27,000 by the first week of March.
Founder and CEO or me&dee Maria Hanson OBE said: “Our desperation to open the lodge as soon as possible is fuelled by our waiting list which has today increased to 18 families who we need to get away on their memory-making break as soon as possible.
“Sadly, and from my 13 years of running the charity, I know that some of these will turn into bereavement breaks following funerals, rather than a family holiday.
“Our new lodge is purposely built to enable us to give the very best break that we can, from all of the catastrophe that surrounds the lives of our families, in a large luxurious space, within the wonderful peace and quiet of the beautiful corner of Sherwood Forest, in Sherwood Hideaway, where we have found our Forever Home.
“We are thrilled with support we have received, but now just have a few weeks to raise the remaining balance and would greatly welcome any support.”
Maria founded me&dee and has since helped over 2,000 families get away and create special memories, something they wouldn’t have otherwise had the opportunity to do.
The project is part of me&dee’s 20/20 Vision Project to purchase a permanent holiday home in Sherwood Forest. The project gives people the chance to buy squares which form the lodge plan. Each ‘square’ costs just £200, with the option to buy a half square and a quarter square also available. All other donations will also be greatly received.
Sellick Partnership Director and me&dee Board Member Nikki Kinsey also stressed the urgency.
She said: “We have done incredibly well to raise what we have, and it would be such a shame to fall at the final hurdle, so we plead with everyone who is able to help us achieve our 20/20 Vision. With this lodge we will be able to help so many families and provide people with special memories that will last a lifetime.
“All we ask is that people spare whatever they can and help us create a haven for families to spend some time together before it is too late.”
Everyone that donates will be mentioned on the me&dee website and be included in a book of memory and will also be mentioned on the website. There is also the possibility of larger involvement by purchasing a room with prices starting at £5,000; this would then be named after the company with a plaque in the room.