A trust which helps older and vulnerable people has launched a campaign to raise £25,000 in just two months to keep up with the number of people using the service.
The board of trustees of Evergreen Care Trust, which started in 2005, has launched the campaign to raise the money, which will be used to sustain its existing services and enable it to help more people.
As part of the campaign, which is called Evergreen Centurions, the trust is looking for 100 people to give £250 immediately.
The trust says it is seeking to raise the money within eight weeks in order to remain financially viable.
The Evergreen Care Trust currently supports more than 500 vulnerable adults each week through its projects in Stamford, Bourne and surrounding villages.
Founder Louise Marsh said: “Everything is expanding and we need our funding to expand with it.
“We are getting vast amounts of referrals for all our services and we have had to employ someone for our befriending service recently.
“We have an enormous amount of volunteer support but they can only do so much and now we need to take on more paid staff.”
Evergreen currently employs 38 paid members of staff, and co-ordinates 230 volunteers to provide a number of free services, including: clean team services, hospital to home transport service, a befriending service, a furniture service and a home support service.
The trust also runs a heavily subsidised meal service, where the meals are delivered and is currently handing out 340 portions a month.
It also runs an advocacy service which in the last year has had a 100 per cent increase in the number of referrals.
Mrs Marsh said: “It makes a difference in peoples’ lives whether that is the home support service or a visit from a volunteer from our befriending service.”
Frank de Souza, 81, of St Clements, Stamford, who uses the Evergreen lunch service at the sheltered housing complex said: “I come twice a week and I enjoy using it. Its a great way to meet people and there’s a great camaraderie.”
Volunteer Robert Perry said: “It’s wonderful. Wonderful people doing a great job and it’s a very rewarding role.”
Mrs Marsh said the trust does not want to be in a position where it is has to turn away people in need of support.
It also wants to answer requests to expand its services into the Deepings.
Mrs Marsh added: “The problem is we have a lot of volunteer support but we only have a small group of people financially supporting us.”
In June last year, the trust relaunched its Friends of Evergreen campaign in a bid to raise a long-term income, asking for 2,000 new friends who would commit £1 a month. Currently the trust has just 163 paying friends.
To find out more about the campaign or to get involved in the trust phone 01780 765900 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.