Heart­break­ing story be­hind our Tele­graph Ap­peal

Read­ers’ generosity never fails to amaze us – this year, these three char­i­ties need your vi­tal sup­port

The Daily Telegraph - - Front page -

The Tele­graph Christ­mas Char­ity Ap­peal now en­ters its 27th year, and this en­dur­ing suc­cess stands tes­ta­ment to the generosity of our read­ers. To date, the ap­peal has raised close to £24mil­lion for a host of de­serv­ing causes over the decades. Your dona­tions, small or large, have proven a life­line to our cho­sen char­i­ties and are a source of great pride to this news­pa­per. As in pre­vi­ous years, our se­lected char­i­ties for 2017, Miss­ing Peo­ple, Fare­share and Ca­nine Part­ners – all of which are briefly in­tro­duced be­low – have been se­lected as or­gan­i­sa­tions of proven ef­fec­tive­ness that, with the sup­port of our read­ers, could make rapid strides for­ward in their cho­sen fields.

Over the course of this win­ter, we will pub­lish a se­ries of ar­ti­cles out­lin­ing these char­i­ties’ vi­tal work, and show­ing ex­actly how your dona­tions can make such a dif­fer­ence to the good they al­ready do.

Dur­ing last year’s Christ­mas char­ity ap­peal you re­sponded with typ­i­cal com­pas­sion, rais­ing £550,000 for the three cho­sen causes.

In to­tal, £226,495 was raised on be­half of the Heads To­gether Cam­paign, which was founded by the Duke and Duchess of Cam­bridge and Prince Harry, in part­ner­ship with eight lead­ing char­i­ties, to en­cour­age peo­ple to speak more openly about their men­tal health.

Through­out the cam­paign, Heads To­gether gen­er­ated mil­lions of con­ver­sa­tions about men­tal well­be­ing and en­cour­aged 1.2mil­lion men to open up about their prob­lems – not least Prince Harry, who re­vealed his own per­sonal bat­tle to The Tele­graph ear­lier this year.

On World Men­tal Health Day in Oc­to­ber, the Royal Foun­da­tion of the Duke and Duchess of Cam­bridge and Prince Harry an­nounced a £2 mil­lion in­vest­ment to es­tab­lish a new start-up for dig­i­tal men­tal health in­no­va­tion. The Foun­da­tion has also launched a new part­ner­ship with the Min­istry of De­fence to im­prove the men­tal health of cur­rent and for­mer Armed Forces per­son­nel.

A fur­ther £173,896 was raised on be­half of Roald Dahl’s Mar­vel­lous Chil­dren’s Char­ity, which was founded by the au­thor’s widow, Felic­ity, to en­sure ev­ery child in the UK has ac­cess to the best pos­si­ble med­i­cal care.

As a di­rect re­sult of the dona­tions from our read­ers, the char­ity has been able to sup­port a spe­cial­ist nurse for chil­dren with neu­ro­mus­cu­lar dis­or­ders at Leeds Teach­ing Hos­pi­tals NHS Trust (which has a caseload of more than 400 young peo­ple) and sup­port a spe­cial­ist rare dis­ease tran­si­tion co­or­di­na­tor at Birm­ing­ham Chil­dren’s Hos­pi­tal.

Jane Miles, the char­ity’s chief ex­ec­u­tive, praised Tele­graph read­ers for rais­ing “vi­tal funds to con­tinue pro­vid­ing in­no­va­tive and lifechang­ing sup­port to se­ri­ously ill chil­dren and their fam­i­lies”.

She added: “Through last year’s cam­paign we have been able to ex­pand our work to keep chil­dren out of hos­pi­tal and at home with their fam­i­lies at Christ­mas.” And then there is Blue Cross, one of the coun­try’s old­est an­i­mal char­i­ties, which was founded in 1897 to pro­vide med­i­cal sanc­tu­ary and treat­ment for the sick, in­jured and home­less crea­tures.

Our read­ers raised £149,701 to help con­tinue its work, and over the past year the char­ity has helped 23,330 pets through its clin­i­cal ser­vices and pro­vided a new home to 7,000 an­i­mals.

“We were hon­oured to be cho­sen for last year’s Christ­mas Ap­peal and the money raised by gen­er­ous Tele­graph read­ers has en­abled us to help thou­sands of pets in need and sup­port our other char­i­ta­ble ac­tiv­i­ties, such as our ed­u­ca­tion pro­grammes and be­reave­ment sup­port ser­vice,” said Steve Goody, the deputy chief ex­ec­u­tive of the char­ity. “Pets change lives and with your help we have changed theirs.”

The Miss­ing Peo­ple Choir, formed of fam­i­lies and friends of peo­ple who have van­ished with­out trace, as well as staff and vol­un­teers from the char­ity, were fi­nal­ists in Bri­tain’s Got Tal­ent this year

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