The spirit of generosity is shining brightly this month as groups across Norfolk and Suffolk play their role in helping those whose lives were torn apart by the catastrophic earthquake that struck Nepal last month.
Various fundraising projects are set to run throughout the Diss Express area, as part of the ongoing international support for the Nepalese region following the disaster on April 25, which resulted in more than 7,000 deaths, a further 15,000 injuries and more than a million people being displaced from their homes.
Among the fundraisers are the Rotary Clubs of Diss and Harleston, which have joined Rotary organisations over the world in collecting donations for the disaster relief charity ShelterBox, which provides shelters and life-saving equipment for families who have lost their homes.
Diss Rotarians have so far raised almost £900 from two collections in the town, and will be holding an overnight camp out in a ShelterBox ten-person survival tent at Diss Park on Saturday, May 30.
Harleston Rotarians, meanwhile, have gathered £1,584 from collections held on April 29 and May 2.
Norma Howell, president of Diss Rotary Club, who is involved in the camp out along with club president-elect Dick Mitchell and vice-president Heather Babb, said Rotarians worldwide stood together in expressing their “profound sadness” at the devastation.
“As we mourn the thousands of lives lost, Rotary joins other international agencies in providing immediate relief to survivors and mobilising our expertise to support long-term recovery and rebuilding efforts throughout the country,” she said.
Diss Rotary Club stated it is hopeful the camping display will encourage more people to make a donation towards the cause, explaining that approximately every £590 pledged will allow ShelterBox to another shelter to an affected family in the area.
Another group getting involved are the young musicians of the South Norfolk Youth Symphonic Band (SNYSB), who will perform ‘A Concert for Nepal’ at the United Reformed Church in Diss on Sunday, May 17, with all proceeds going towards the aid operations.
The band unanimously agreed to hold the show on short notice following the disaster, having previously raised money for several local and national charities.
Mandy Whitham, SNYSB spokesperson, said: “As a result of tours to Asia over the past few years, many of the band members are fully aware of just how incredibly difficult life must be in these out of the way regions and the band would like to do their bit to help those in Nepal.”
The performance starts at 7pm, with tickets available at £5 for adults and £2 for children or concessions from the Diss Tourist Office, or Diss Youth and Community Centre.
Elsewhere, there will be a Nepal Earthquake Appeal Fundraising Event at Bressingham Village Hall from 10am until 2pm tomorrow, featuring cake and plant sales, raffle, bric-a-brac and refreshments, while on the same day, there are also disaster relief collections at an open gardens event in Botesdale, taking place between 11am and 5pm.