The Rainbow Centre in Fareham needs to raise £50,000 to ensure survival

A CHARITY which provides life changing therapies for children and adults with life-limiting illnesses needs to raise £50,000 to prevent potential closure.

The Rainbow Centre in Fareham supports children with cerebral palsy and adults suffering from Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis and recovering from strokes.

The centre needs to raise £100,000 by the end of August or it may have to review the levels of service it provides or even close. Since the appeal launched four weeks ago fundraisers have already generated £46,000.

Centre staff have now said they are ‘stepping up a gear’ to ensure the additional money is found.

The Rainbow Centre needs to raise £100,000 by the end of August Picture: Malcolm Wells (19063-1226)

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Charity founder, Helen Somerset-How, said: ‘All the help we get from our supporters enables us to continue our vital work within the disabled community at a time when the NHS is so stretched and unable to deliver the level of service these families so desperately need. We have still got a long way to go, but raising this much money in a short period of time inspires me to feel this target is possible.’

Annual running costs are almost £850,000 per year and with no government funding the centre is entirely dependent on donations and raising its own funds. The crisis appeal was launched after community donations fell by 30 per cent.

The money raised so far has come from a bequest, a grant from a charitable foundation and the efforts of local people.

Helen added: ‘The efforts of so many people determined to see that the Rainbow Centre survives has been truly heartwarming. People have been doing amazing things to raise funds, from getting sponsorship for shaving their head, jumping out of aeroplanes, baking cakes to sell and so many other fantastic efforts.’

Therapies delivered by the centre have enabled severely disabled children to walk and perform other activities and adults to re-train some of the motor skills that they lose with Parkinson’s and as a result of strokes.

Research has shown that nationally fewer people gave to charity in 2018 than in either of the previous two years which has had serious implications for charities such as The Rainbow Centre.