21st April 2020

A message of thanks from our founder, Ray Donnelly

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I just wanted to take a moment to say thank you to everyone who has responded to our anniversary appeal. It is incredibly humbling to not only see the donations come in but also read about how the charity has helped, is helping and what it means to you.

When I started this charity in 1990, it was in the face of opposition, the face of negativity, the face of hopelessness. But seeing your incredible generosity and kind words, it gives me, and the whole charity, real hope for the future.

Rest assured, we are doing everything we can to get through the pandemic; the alternative just isn’t worth thinking about.

We may not be able to apply directly to the Government for charity funding, but we are exhausting every other potential funding avenue.

We have furloughed over half of our staff and, now the furlough scheme is open, we hope our application will be successful. We are in talks with our bank for a business interruption loan and are seeking rate relief for our closed retail shops.

And, of course, we have the most incredible supporters.

When we started, we had no money, no patrons, no corporate support, nothing. Now, it’s hard to begin to talk about the achievements of the charity – there are so many.

With the help of so many people, not least Roy Castle, we have funded, and continue to fund, pioneering research, the success of which we are now seeing come to fruition with the rollout of targeted lung health checks. We were instrumental in the smoking ban and the long-term impact that is now having on people’s health.

And right now, as we have done throughout our 30-year history, we are supporting the thousands of people living with lung cancer, answering questions through our Ask the Nurse service and making sure they have access to the latest information about COVID-19 and the impact on those with the disease.

Despite these difficult times, we have launched our new Keep in Touch Support Service, helping people like Brian:

Hearing from this service is a great relief for me. It’s as helpful as any part of the NHS. It’s great hearing from you every week. I look forward to it and it keeps me in touch with the world outside my immediate family.

Brian, living with lung cancer

This is why we have no option but to get through this. We were the first UK charity solely dedicated to lung cancer and, 30 years on, we remain the only UK charity solely dedicated in supporting everyone affected by the disease.

Things are hard and we don’t know how long we will find ourselves in this difficult situation. But we are resilient. You make us resilient. Your creativity is inspiring, your generosity – through our Facebook fundraiser and donations through our website – is astonishing. So, thank you.

And as Roy would say, dedication is the name of the game.