A fund to help those hit hardest by the pandemic in the Cambridge region and backed by the Cambridge News has topped the three quarters of a million pounds mark.
More than £750,000 has been donated to the Cambridgeshire Coronavirus Community Fund to help people across the county cope with the impact of virus.
The milestone was reached after a £63,360 grant by the National Emergencies Trust (NET) to the appeal.
The fund is managed by Cambridgeshire Community Foundation, with Reach Plc titles Cambridgeshire Live and the Cambridge News as media partners.
The foundation has already distributed £592,172 to 148 charities and groups helping victims of domestic abuse, children struggling with school, those struggling to afford food, and more. Its target is to raise a million pounds.
David Bartlett, editor of the Cambridge News praised all those involved in the initiative.
“Cambridgeshire Community Foundation (CCF) have done a superb job leading the Cambridgeshire Coronavirus Community Fund, and we have been delighted to be media partners.
“Our readers, local businesses and councils, and some very generous philanthropists have donated much needed money, however it would be remiss not to mention the National Emergencies Trust fund which has been a key donor.
“Part of the reason the National Emergencies Trust has donated more than £370,000 is because CCF have done such a good job disbursing money to charities across the county.
“Our role has been to raise awareness of the fund and all the work that is going on, and we have written dozens of stories to publicise the fund.
“The funding goal was increased from the original £100,000 in increments, and when CCF’s chief executive Michael O’Toole told me it would eventually need to be £1m I was shocked. But we are committed to making sure the fund gets the coverage it needs so it can provide help where it is most needed.
“It is so important that the regional press stand with its communities, and we know there is much more to do. We will continue to do as much as we can to be part of that effort.”
Michael O’Toole, chief executive of the Cambridgeshire Community Foundation added: “We are delighted to pass the £750,000 mark for the appeal.
“A whole range of people and organisations have come together to make this possible, from young people donating £5 to large local businesses donating thousands. We couldn’t have got this far without their support.”