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You Raise Me Up

Despite having had to close during the original lockdown, Polegate’s much-loved ‘You Raise Me Up Support Centre and Coffee Shop’ is now very much open.

Based in Polegate High Street, the shop is a warm, welcoming, safe place for anyone who needs emotional support – or simply someone to talk to, listen or understand.

However, as part of charity You Raise Me Up, founded in June 2011 by the late Jane Brooks and her husband Fraser, the coffee shop also raises much-needed funds to support families that have suffered the loss of a young adult. The funds are even more important now that Covid-19 has put many fundraising events on hold.

Why do people volunteer for you?

“Our volunteers mainly volunteer because they themselves have earlier needed support from us.” explained Lesley Powell-Cullingford, Head of Fundraising for You Raise Me Up. “Having had the help and understanding they needed at such a difficult time of their lives, they naturally want to help other families in similar situations.”

“Other volunteers are simply people within the local community who either know about us or have learned about us by coming into the shop – for coffee and a cake, to sit for a while, or for a chat or support,” Lesley added.

Unfortunately, Covid-19 has meant many of their volunteers, who help with myriad fundraising events, have not been able to do so. After months of training for the Brighton Marathon, Louis Walder was gutted to find out it had been postponed – but he still raised £200. Louis said: “I hope to continue raising money for You Raise Me Up in the future and supporting the wonderful work they continue to do.”

What next?

As You Raise Me Up not only provides one-to-one specialist counselling to bereaved families, but to any family who are in need of help with mental health issues, they have naturally been busier than ever this year. There is no doubt that their amazing volunteers will be back out there fundraising with a vengeance just as soon as they can.

Until then, one easy way anyone can volunteer is by visiting the ‘You Raise Me Up Support Centre and Coffee Shop’ because every penny of the profits go to help bereaved families.

Drinking coffee and eating cake in light, airy, friendly surroundings has surely got to be the easiest volunteering job ever!

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