Currently visiting Hanley, Stoke-on-Trent on Trent. A sculpture called the Knife Angel. Its there for the rest of April and its made of over 100,000 knives handed in across the country in a UK wide knife amnesty. It makes you realise how many young people think they need to carry knives to stay safe. Where the USA and other countries have problems with gun crime we have young people, particularly young men and youths, dying and injured by knives. This sculpture is trying to persuade them that the use of knives is dangerous and foolish and the organisers are raising funds to educate people to say no to using knives. I hope they succeed.
Red nose day is here today! Every two years in the UK there is a comedy TV ‘telethon’ to raise money for charities in the UK and around the world. Over the years it has collected Millions and Millions of pounds.
This time the noses are biodegradable. Comic relief, the charity behind the red nose supports so many people. Its amazing, fun, helping to change people’s lives.
Plus it’s fun in a bad time. So why not support it. Love, peace and laughter.
Ukraine 🇺🇦 needs help, they need medical support because of all the death and destruction that Russia is causing in the country. One charity in Shropshire, England is sending ambulances over to them. They are slightly outdated and have been replaced by new ones but are perfectly suitable. The Disasters Emergency committee is collecting for Ukraine. This is group of charities supporting the people who need help. I hope Putin sees sense and stops this stupid war. Two million people have left as refugees now. God knows what will happen next.
#bandofsketchers prompt on Thursday was relief. I wanted to draw a comic relief red nose (a charity that collects millions of pounds for people in need all round the world) but I can’t find one, (been buying them every couple of years) so I tried to draw one from memory. The telethon has been going for years and mainly relies on comedy to encourage people to donate.
It was another drawing challenge with Stoke Urban Sketchers, but I think it means more than that…. I am privileged to live in a country where we have sufficient rain, most of the time, to fill our needs. Last year we decided to have an outside tap fitted. It means that if there is drought we can use watering cans and a hose to water the garden. Ideally we need to fit a waterbutt to become more self sufficient. Drawing a tap is significant, a basic I sometimes take for granted.
The need for fresh water is a desperate problem across a lot of the world. There are charities you can donate to including Wateraid which is trying to bring fresh water to some of the poorest countries in the world.
So I’m just suggesting making a small donation. Each tiny drop of water from many people can turn into a torrent if enough of us give. If you can wash your hands it aids the health of people, the ability to grow crops and reduces famine and disease.
This might be someone’s meal today, tonight, next week. They may be on a low income, on benefits or state handouts. They might be in a refugee camp trying to flee from famine or oppression.
Coming closer to home, in a land that is the sixth richest in the World and where many more billionaires live than ever before, the number of Foodbanks here over the last few years have soared, from a handful ten years ago to more of them than McDonald’s outlets now! There are around two THOUSAND Foodbanks in this country now. Let that sink in. And people using them are only allowed two or three referrals in a six month period. That referral gives them emergency food for three or four days. They are used when someones benefit has been cancelled or delayed. I know about them because I used to refer people into them. I had to jump through hoops to get a referral for them. Often I came up against the arguments about whether they were deserving enough. I would be talking to a decision maker who would criticise the person’s ability to budget a paltry amount of money that the decision maker could not possibly have lived on themselves.
My question again is why are there Foodbanks? Why are the poorest in society forgotten? Why do the rich think it’s OK to look down on the poor? Remember that it is only by luck that we are born into the lives we have.
There is a charity collecting old bras that can be recycled and used for women in Africa (see the link). The charity gets money to combat breast cancer by collecting the bras and women in Africa who can’t afford them get a decent, useful, inexpensive bra that they can wear.
One of the stalls in the penkhull mystery play day did just this and collected Hundreds of bras. I’ve asked their permission to use their photo. Congratulations to them for taking the time to support the charity.
Red nose day is a British charity which started many years ago. They do a telethon every two years and do comic sketches and serious reports to raise money for good causes. So far they have raised over £40 million. The money is split 50/50 between the UK and other countries..
They are trying to fight malaria, end child marriage, support families in need.
The comic relief symbol is the red nose. They sell these and other merchandise to raise funds. That’s why I’m wearing mine here 😜
I just had my annul eye test and had to have eyedrops to expand my pupils. My vision was so blurred I was not allowed to drive and when I got home I used my phone camera to zoom in so I could see things!
But then I thought how lucky I am to have a health service where I can get my eyes tested and checked with relative ease. How do people manage in other countries where poverty is endemic? I have given old glasses to charities in the past so that they can be shipped abroad and reused by other people with vision problems.
Life is not easy, and things could be much better organised. Imagine having proper collection points where you can discard your old glasses when your prescription changes. Imagine that these glasses get redistributed to people who need them. It might be that they are only shared with those that cannot afford to buy. Isn’t that a good thing? Think how much resource that could save? There must be a charity somewhere that does this…..
Oh what fun. I went to sing with our choir at a making a difference conference today. We heard about a business woman who had set up a charity to help feed children in the school holidays and from a second speaker about 6 women aged over 100 whose lives tell a fascinating tale of what life was like living through the 20th century. I could not stay for the second half but I really enjoyed a workshop to make a flag using paint a canvas square and masking tape to keep the colours separate and the edges of the colours neat. I was not able to collect mine but I hope someone from the choir will have collected it for me.
One of the songs we sang was “nanna was a suffragette” which talks about the fight for the vote for Women 100 years ago. Definitely making a difference.