Church and Oswaldtwistle Rotary at their recent Monday meeting presented cheques to four local organisations who provide such a great service to people of East Lancashire. These organisations were the Air Ambulance North West, The MS Society, The Accrington and District Blind Society and the Oswaldtwistle Food Bank. These donations were as a result of Santa collections at the ASDA and TESCO supermarkets during December.

Air Ambulance North West started up in 1999 and now has 3 helicopters, which undertake around 2,000 missions every year. They are entirely reliant on donations to deliver its lifesaving emergency service. At the Rotary meeting Liz Greenwood representing Air Ambulance was presented with a cheque for £610.

Multiple Sclerosis (MS) is a neurological condition affecting the nervous system, when the immune system is not working properly. Neurons in the brain are covered by a protective sheath called myelin. For some reason which is not known why, the body’s immune system attacks the myelin and prevents the nerves sending messages to the rest of the body. It is estimated 2 million people worldwide have MS with 100.000 being in the UK. As yet, sadly there is no cure, but research continues. Jennifer Turner received a cheque for £600.

Accrington and District Blind Society is one of the smallest independent local charities supporting people with sight loss in the UK. They serve most of East Lancashire and parts of Rossendale. They were established in 1875 and recently celebrated their 140 years of service. They are completely volunteer led and rely on donations and legacies for them to continue their fine work. Susan Walsh was at the meeting to receive a cheque for £555.

Churches in Oswaldtwistle have come together to provide food for struggling local people at the community Food Bank which opened in November at Rhyddings

Methodist Church, and operates every Monday between the hours of 1 – 5pm. Fifteen collecting bins have been located in schools, supermarkets, businesses and even GP surgeries to collect non-perishable food which will be distributed to qualifying families and individuals. Donations are essential to help pay for the running costs of the Food Bank. There has been a positive response so far and it is planned to add further collection points and take on more volunteers should the need arise. A cheque was presented to Janet Johnstone for £559.

Lyndon Heap President of the Rotary club said: “Our members are delighted to make these donations to such worthwhile organisations who have to raise themselves, substantial funds every year to maintain their operations. I must take this opportunity once more of thanking the residents of Hyndburn for making such a generous amount of £2,324 at the Santa collections at the ASDA and TESCO supermarkets.

Rotarians, Friends of Rotary and volunteers from the above 4 organisations, were on hand with their collection buckets throughout the 4 days, which made this a real joint successful event.”

The photo shows left to right: Jennifer Turner-MS Society, Ken Freeman-Chairman Fundraiser for the Rotary club, Susan Walsh-Accrington and District Blind Society, Janet Johnstone-Oswaldtwistle Food Bank, Liz Greenwood-NW Air Ambulance and President Lyndon Heap.



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