A little help from my friends. Crowdfund.

In this blog I am going to make you feel good (possibly)  and ask for your help. The Christmas Dinner for care leavers was inspired by The Tope Project in 2012. . In 2013 the first Christmas dinner was held in  Manchester. In 2014 Manchester and Hackney. In 2015 Manchester, Hackney and Leeds and in 2016 a Christmas dinner took place for care leavers in Manchester, London, Leeds, Liverpool and Oxford. Here’s a BBC piece that went on Christmas Day 2016.

So far in 2017 Manchester, Islington, Hackney, Richmond, Stockport, Sheffield, Birmingham, Canterbury, Wirral, Liverpool, Leeds, and Hackney have shown interest and most have started their steering group meetings. We’ve inspired an equivalent Christmas Dinner in Scotland which is run independently by The Who Cares Trust. We are lighting up the country like… a Christmas tree.  All the teams are using the brand new How To Guide which was made by volunteers from different Christmas Dinners  at a weekend away in January. It tells you everything you need to know about what we do and how we do it.

Because of the support from fantastic communities who provide so much of what is needed each Christmas Dinner costs only £5,000 max – and that’s to create a magical day for up to 50 care leavers. In an ideal world The Christmas Dinner teams don’t use it.  It is contingency money. The Christmas Dinner has eight elements; venue, chef, food, guests, volunteers, travel, presents and communications.

In 2013 we raised £10,513 There was one Christmas Dinner
In 2014 we raised £14,986 There were two Christmas Dinners
In 2015 we raised £43,487 There were three Christmas dinners
In 2016 we raised £1615 There were five Christmas Dinners.

The only other expense was a weekend in January where members of each Christmas Dinner came together and formulated the brand new how to guide. That cost £3,000.  Presently there is £12,000 in the Christmas dinner account; which provides contingency for just over two Christmas Dinners. I predict eight Christmas Dinners this year. So I need to raise £28,000 between now and December 1st to make it happen; and to secure the future of The Christmas Dinners for 2017 and beyond.

I raised £1,000 by performing at The Martin Harris Centre on Friday.  I have raised £2,000 throughTHE REPORT at The Royal Court and I will be raising £3,000 by taking part in a celebrity show on TV – can’t say what it is yet. Including the £12,000 that’s a total of £18,000.  We need £22,000 by December 1st.   I’m doing everything I can.   Can you help?   This is a request for your help on this unique project. Maybe you’d do a sponsored run, a sponsored bake off…. Between now and December 1st 2017 we have  57 days.

http://www.crowdfunder.co.uk/the-christmas-dinner-2017Here is the crowdfunder page.Please pledge what you can.

I am in no doubt that we will do it because I believe in this project.  Before I go I should thank the family who came to my performance in Leigh and gave me a cheque for One Hundred Pouds to The Christmas Dinner. Every penny counts. http://www.crowdfunder.co.uk/the-christmas-dinner-2017

22 thoughts on “A little help from my friends. Crowdfund.

      • Hi Suzy
        I am Lisa Murphy the coordinator of the Hackney Christmas Dinner 2017 . You are most welcome to join us in making thie Christmas Dinner happen in Hackney again this year . Our next meeting is on this Tuesday at 6.30pm upstairs room at Palm 2 on Lower. Laptop Road Hackney E5. Please check our Facebook for further information about our group .
        We look forward to meeting you on Tuesday . Hope you can make its
        Warm regards
        Lisa Murphy
        Hackney Christmas Dinner 2017

  1. Hi Lemn. How do I volunteer for the Christmas Dinner Project? I don’t have a lot of money would love to be involved in some other way (I’m a care leaver). Best wishes, Kirsty

  2. Hereby pledging £100. I’ll do the pay into the bank thing. I’ll gift aid it as well. I’ll also – in a minute – retweet & endorse. Nowhere near your numbers of followers but I’ll ask all of them also to read absorb & retweet. I’m in Wirral next week and will bang on about it there too.

  3. A brilliant project will spread the word wide. I am proud to know some of the amazing young people involved in the original TOPE project and appreciate the massive impact this has. Good on ye! And may you exceed the target!

  4. Hi Lemn, I am unable to volunteer this year but if anyone who reads this is considering helping out I highly recommend it. Everyone benefits. I shall be donating, and I will be thinking of all the Big Christmas Dinners happening across GB. X

  5. Count me in- I think I can raise about £250 by 1st December. Thsee dinners are what the Christmas spirit is supposed to be.

  6. Pingback: Lemn Sissay’s Christmas Dinners for Care Leavers – we need your help

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