Charity Corner: Help Harry Help Others
It’s a new year and I’ve decided to create a new series. Different to other series that I work on, ‘Charity Corner’ is where I will be using my blog as a platform to lend a voice to different charities and organisations of all sizes, backgrounds and causes. There are so many in existence and while some are lucky to have the privilege to advertise nation-wide or even internationally, there are also so many smaller causes but equally as important that deserve the chance to spread the word of their actions.For the very first Charity Corner, I’ve spoken to Georgie Moseley, founder of Help Harry Help Others, a charity who aims to fund vital brain tumor research.
What is the mission of your charity?
Our mission is simple. To ultimately find a cure for brain cancer, We offer grants to families suffering financial hardship directly as a result of a cancer diagnosis. We also offer adults and children with any type of Cancer any support that is needed outside of cancer treatment- all from under one roof.
In a ‘home-from-home’ environment, we offer time, understanding, empathy, advice, as well as social activities.
We strongly believe that no one should face cancer alone, or feel isolated. We offer accessible support in the community to adults and children affected by any type of cancer. No referrals are required – we are here to help!
What’s the story behind the creation of ‘Help Harry Help Others’?
My son, Harry, was diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumour in 2007. In 2009 after undergoing intensive radiotherapy Harry met a fellow patient (Robert Harley who was 55 years old). When Harry heard his friend was deteriorating, he had a vision, a vision to help all those with affected by cancer following him seeing a fellow patient deteriorate. With a brain tumour himself, my incredible boy raised over £750,00 for good causes via his famous bracelet making idea until he passed away in 2011, aged eleven.
Due to the impact that cancer had on our family, I saw gaps for areas of support and decided that I needed to continue with Harry’s great work and ensure other families had the support they needed. Therefore, in 2012, I established HelpHarryHelpOthers, a unique local cancer charity servicing those affected by cancer. Then in 2015 we also opened the Birmingham drop In Cancer Support centre which, in a ‘home from home’ environment offers every inch of support outside of treatment from under one roof.
What outcomes has your charity seen through its work?
HelpHarryHelpOthers has three core objectives
• HelpCURE – Where we fund vital research projects.
• HelpCOPE – Where we provide financial grants to families experiencing financial hardship as a result of cancer diagnosis.
• HelpCARE – Offering support outside of treatment at our Birmingham Cancer Drop-In Centre.
To date, we have donated a staggering £173,000 to vital research in combatting brain cancer. Furthermore, we have helped 391 families with financial assistance through our HelpCOPE fund, and over 250 patients at our cancer support centre.
Our most notable accomplishment was in July 2016 when we completely renovated the family home of a brave little girl battling Retinoblastoma- an extremely rare form of eye cancer. The house was in a state of disrepair, putting Emily’s deteriorating health at risk. In just 9 weeks we did our own DIY SOS, put on a new roof, windows, knocked down a very unsafe extension and rebuilt it, we re-plastered the whole house, landscaped both front and rear gardens, put in a new kitchen and bathroom, decorated the whole house top to bottom and furnished it with basic new furnishings. All this work was completed in 9 weeks from us having the keys to the site.
Sadly, Emily passed away on January 5th, after undergoing an operation, aged three. Our thoughts are with the family at this terribly sad time.
In what way do donations to HHHO benefit you?
Donations are incredibly important. Each year, it gets harder to raise much-needed funds. As a small family run charity currently we don’t receive any funding. More emphasis and support needs to be focussed on patients overall ‘wellbeing’ both physically and mentally – this is where we are different. We don’t have full-time fundraisers or bid writers etc. By making donations, you help us to continue providing vital support that is needed. They also help fund research and provide support for those who really need it. Many people are not aware of the huge financial implications a family is put under following the diagnosis.
We are a beacon of hope for many, and it is through the kindness of others that we can continue to be so.
How can people help your charity besides just giving money?
There are many ways people can help us. We understand that people can’t always give financially. However, for those that have time, we are always on the lookout for volunteers. We have many volunteers that donate their services to our patients.
We welcome your time and encourage anybody interested in volunteering to get in touch. We help families nationally and we would love to have a presence nationally. Volunteers (Harry’s Heroes) that focus on awareness in their communities could really help address this.
What is the biggest milestone you have achieved since the launch of your charity?
I would say the biggest milestone for us was establishing the Cancer Support Centre (CSC).
The idea for the CSC was conceived in December 2014 literally as I lay in bed thinking more needed to be done; by May 2015 I was fortunate to acquire the then recently vacant Stechford Neighbourhood Office. The building needed extensive renovations. Fortunately, I received unprecedented support from local businesses and the surrounding community in making this reality. To me, it was important that the centre represented an oasis easing the added stresses that a Cancer diagnosis inflicts upon families. Mental wellbeing is vitally important, especially when facing such a life changing illness. To others it would represent a beacon of hope and support, providing professional benefit, housing, financial and debt advice. We also offer Counselling, emotional support, therapeutic holistic therapies such as Qigong and Reiki which many of our patients take full advantage of and enjoy thoroughly. As the name suggests, people can literally ‘drop in’ if they are having a bad day and receive emotional support.
Having been through this experience myself, Cancer is a life changing illness and can often be a very lonely experience. The centre has been created addressing all the issues where there is not enough support for patients and their families/friends.
What does the charity hope to achieve in 12 months time?
I would say, due to the amount of people that are using the centre, and registering with us on a weekly basis, we really need to look at opening another centre. Currently, we are operating from Stechford, Birmingham, and there are so many other people that would benefit from our help and support that are for whatever reason unable to reach out to us. We really need to raise the profile of the work we do, as there is nobody out there offering what we do, and with no cost to the patient.
Where can people find more information on your charity?
We encourage anybody going through cancer- in whatever way, to contact us and find out how we can help. We are open Monday- Friday 9 am – 5 pm.
Do you have a charity that you’d like me to discuss in this series? Please email me for more info.
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Jazz is a Disney, tea and pop culture enthusiast with a passion for blogging. Also a proud introvert.