The Leanne Fund is continuing to provide vital support to those affected by Cystic Fibrosis and their families across the Highlands and Islands, Grampian and Tayside regions during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The charity, which relies heavily on fundraising and donations, is currently working hard to continue assisting those with Cystic Fibrosis who are classed as extremely vulnerable to severe illness from infection with COVID-19.
All fundraising events for the charity including the Point 5k/10k and Tiumpan 20/20 Challenge have now been postponed.
Currently all Leanne Fund service users are self-isolating at home for a minimum of 12 weeks.
Chrisetta Mitchell, Development Manager of The Leanne Fund said the charity are seeing an increasing number of requests for sport and fitness equipment for home use.
She said: “Individuals affected by CF are encouraged to participate in regular physical activity and exercise to help improve physical function, cardiovascular performance and muscle strength. While they are no longer permitted to go out or attend the gym or sports classes we have seen a marked increase in the number of requests for sport and fitness equipment for home use.
"This is available through our Get Active service. We have recently supported individuals with treadmills, weight benches, trampolines and exercise bikes. Suppliers are experiencing an unprecedented demand but so far we have managed to fulfil requests which means individuals can maintain their fitness and importantly their lung function while they are having to remain indoors.”
She added that maintaining mental health is also hugely important particularly in the current situation and The Leanne Fund is also striving to offer support services.
“If you have Cystic Fibrosis and are self-isolating or social distancing because of coronavirus (COVID-19), it’s important to look after your mental health. It’s normal to feel anxious, frustrated or bored, but if you’re worried about the effect it will have on your mental health, you are not alone – we are here to help!
“As key Cystic Fibrosis staff may be redeployed to provide support in other areas during the COVID-19 crisis, individuals and families are urged to contact The Leanne Fund directly if they require to access any of our support services.
“Our professional registered mindfulness coaches/counsellors are at the end of the phone or available via Skype/Zoom. Please get in touch with us on 01851 702020 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org”
As a charity which relies entirely on fundraising and donations, Chrisetta added: “We are so grateful to those who have given so generously to allow us to be able to provide this support during this time of crisis.”
“The Leanne Fund relies entirely on fundraising and donations to fund our vital support services and anyone wishing to give towards our work can do so at https://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/charity-web/charity/finalCharityHomepage.action?charityId=1018656”
Ten years of The Leanne Fund was marked in the Scottish Parliament last week with a motion put forward by Isles MSP Alasdair Allan.
Mr Allan congratulated the charity for the significant achievements in providing support to those with Cystic Fibrosis and their families across the Highlands and Islands and Grampian regions.
He said: “The Leanne Fund is an incredible charity which we are lucky to have. It’s even more inspirational when you consider how the charity began, and the work Chrisetta and the other volunteers had to put in to establish the charity and to support people with cystic fibrosis and their families.
“I was delighted to put down a motion in the Scottish Parliament marking their tenth anniversary. I hope the next ten years are at least as successful.”
The motion was supported by cross party members of the Scottish Parliament.
Chrisetta Mitchell, Development Manager of The Leanne Fund said: “The Leanne Fund has progressed so much over the last 10 years which has allowed us to expand to other areas and increase the level of support services we provide.
“We are very pleased that the work of our charity has been noted in the Scottish Parliament and we thank our MSP Alasdair Allan for putting this forward.”
The motion stated:
“That the Parliament congratulate the Leanne Fund, considers that is it the foremost Cystic Fibrosis charity organisation in the Highlands and Islands and Grampian regions, praises its achievements in providing psychological, emotional, social, physical and financial support to those with the condition and their families; recognises the legacy of Leanne Mitchell, who passed away from the condition aged 21, of helping others and giving individuals the opportunity to live their lives to the fullest extent and with a joyful heart; commends the Mitchell family and the entire Leanne Fund organisation for their continued tireless support of individuals living with Cystic Fibrosis and their families, and wishes them continued success in the years to come.”
The Leanne Fund is marking 10 years’ service to people with Cystic Fibrosis with a call for people to contribute 100 Moments from Leanne - their own positive memories over a decade of the charity’s work.
The Leanne Fund has been helping to enrich life for people with CF and their families since 2010. Now they’re calling on anyone who has benefited to help demonstrate the charity’s long-time claim, that life is for living.
Leanne Mitchell passed away due to Cystic Fibrosis in 2009, at the age of 21. In her memory, The Leanne Fund was set up in 2010 by her family and has since expanded from their home in the Isle of Lewis to cover the whole of the Highlands and Islands, Grampian and Tayside NHS regions.
Development manager Chrisetta Mitchell said: “One of the things we learnt through Leanne is how important it is to live life with positivity and to treasure the good moments. Leanne had an incredible strength and determination to live life to the full, making the most of every precious moment. Her life was inspirational and the fund represents her heartfelt desire to bring happiness to others.”
It’s that positivity that has inspired ‘100 Moments from Leanne’. Supporters, Cystic Fibrosis sufferers and family members all have moments to share – whether of an achievement, a precious memory, or a time when The Leanne Fund has simply lifted their spirits.
Among the first to bring their memories forward was Chrisell Macleod, a Leanne Fund supporter from the Isle of Lewis. She said: “It was the year I was going to be fifty and I could not have spent it in a more gruelling training regime, to walk 100 miles for Leanne, but I would not change it for the world. I was about to find out all about the amazing work of the Leanne Fund and make life-long crazy friends.”
And CF sufferer Eden of Huntly said: “My favourite moment was when Chrisetta and Willie Mitchell came to my school Christmas Fayre to my hama bead stall, which was raising money for The Leanne Fund. I am very lucky and have lots of great equipment to make physio at home fun and I got a great hamper when I had my first stay in hospital before Christmas. I do fundraising every year to say thank you for all they do for me!”
Moments like these, contributed to the charity in words or pictures throughout the anniversary year, will be shared – anonymously if that’s preferred – through social media and on display in the Stornoway office. In this way they hope to spread the rainbow of supportive emotions that has kept the charity strong for a decade.
The Leanne Fund itself has a number of reasons for feeling positive about 2020, with the appointment of their second staff member and the beginning of a year-long programme of fundraising events.
Anne Nicolson from Tong has started work as a part-time administrative support officer, thanks to additional funding from the Tayside Community Innovation Fund. She’ll be available at the Leanne Fund’s office every morning, five days a week, and can be reached on 01851 702020.
Chrisetta Mitchell said: “It’s really good to get an extra person regularly in the office, freeing up more time for me to concentrate on work across the large area of Scotland where we now provide support. It means that I can be out of the office, knowing that I am leaving the work in capable hands.”
The work includes planning this year’s Rainbow Raiser on February 28th – a day for wearing colourful clothes, baking rainbow bakes and doing whatever it takes to lift spirits and raise funds.
The year will also see The Leanne Fund 5k and 10k in Point, tea in the Town Hall in Stornoway, sponsored places on the Aberdeen Kiltwalk and numerous collections across supermarkets and community events Scotland-wide.
If you’d like to contribute one of your memories for 100 Moments from Leanne, get in touch by email at email@example.com, follow on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/theleannefund/ or on Twitter at https://twitter.com/TheLeanneFund