Our palliative care team works in many different hospitals and we have been horrified at how low the average health professional’s morale is right now. The unpredictable nature of the pandemic and the constant threat of infection, infecting others and having to cover for those off sick, is overwhelming. So this week we thought our Facebook/Social media theme should be #careforthecaregiver.
However, Tracey and I had a meeting today to review all matters ‘Umduduzi’ and realise we have to change the theme. Life as an NPO worker is never easy. We knew things were going to be even more tight financially this year with the cancellation of a few fundraisers, but we hadn’t anticipated just how much the entire global economy would impact our other sources of funding. Even our tiny MySchool contribution has nearly halved; fewer supporters able to shop at Woolies perhaps?
We have been so grateful to those who have continued to donate and for the innovative fundraising efforts by some of our most loyal supporters. At this time, we have funds for 6 more weeks left. After that, we don’t know what will happen. Our services can’t come to a halt but at the same time we can’t ask our team to work for free. A truly daunting time.
The complete lifting of lockdown is not going to happen any time soon. Reality is that we will never return to ‘normal’. So we have to get working on even more creative fundraising ideas.
In the interim, if you have experienced the value of our work or can imagine how different paediatric services would be in KZN without our support, please consider helping Umduduzi right now. The key is going to be finding many, to donate a little (or a lot!). Sign up for a regular debit order and encourage your friends to do the same. Make Umduduzi a beneficiary on your My School Card or make a once off donation that you can declare for tax benefit. If 1000 people donated R100 every month that would almost cover all over costs!
We hate asking for money and just wish we could be in a position to focus on our core work. But sadly, until medical aids fully recognise the value of palliative care and the government finds a way to finance it, we are doomed to remain fully donor dependent.
We cannot talk about #careforthecaregiver if we cannot even take care of ourselves. Please help us to continue our work with the most vulnerable.
Julia and Tracey