Time is running out for charity appeal

Members of SWR Mind's 'Open Mind' group outside Whitby Library
Members of SWR Mind's 'Open Mind' group outside Whitby Library

A mental health charity that helps hundreds of people in the Whitby area has just two weeks left to raise the remaining £6,000 of the £20,000 total it needs to save itself from closure.

Scarborough Whitby and Ryedale Mind employs 17 staff and currently runs seven projects including three based in Whitby and the surrounding villages.

Sophie Hall, the charity’s head of services, said: “We have made as many savings as possible to stay afloat but, without people’s help we will close at a time when we have helped more people than ever before in the Whitby area.

“We’ve had some great pledges of support so far and are hugely grateful to the people who have donated, many of whom can least afford it.

“Please help us in whatever way you can because without the community’s support many isolated and vulnerable people will be left alone at a time when they need us most.

“We are not a charity shop we help to save lives.”

Scarborough Whitby and Ryedale Mind, which has been established over 50 years, supports almost 1,000 people with mental illnesses like depression, anxiety, schizophrenia and bipolar disorder as well as those with learning disabilities and autism.

In Whitby and district, the charity runs a support group at Whitby Library, ‘Side by Side’ providing one-to-one support run by a full-time member of staff and trained volunteers .

It also operates a Healthy Finances project in partnership with the Citizens Advice Bureau and Whitby, Scarborough and Ryedale DAG, that offers help with finances, debt, employment and benefits.

Scarborough Whitby and Ryedale Mind is not a charity shop and is not funded by charity shops – including the one in Whitby – or the national Mind charity for the support services it provides.

It is an independent charity that has to raise its own funds and has hit a financial crisis due to cutbacks.

In just five weeks since the organisation launched its Save SWR Mind crisis appeal, £12,000 has already poured in from people, businesses and organisations, many of whom have made cash donations or held fundraising events on the charity’s behalf.

A further £2,000 in donations has also been pledged including almost £500 raised from the Whitby Goth Weekend football match at the Turnbull Ground last month.

But the charity is appealing for more donations before it is too late.

People can donate to the appeal online via SWR Mind’s website www.swrmind.org.uk, its Just Giving page www.justgiving.com/swrmind or by texting SWRM22 with the amount they want to donate in £ to70070.

They can also send a cheque made payable to Scarborough, Whitby and Ryedale Mind, PO Box 304, Scarborough, YO11 3YJ