The NSPCC has launched a £3.2m appeal for its work in supporting child abuse victims during the trauma of giving evidence in court. The Caring for Children in Court Appeal is chaired by former TV presenter Noel Edmonds, a member of the charity's National Appeal Board. The NSPCC is promoting the campaign with new research showing that child witnesses are routinely intimidated in court and many find the experience of testifying just as traumatic as the abuse itself. The charity needs to raise £3.2m to ensure that five of its six young witness services can continue.
The British Red Cross is stepping up its emergency-response funding with an appeal launched last week by the Queen at the opening of the charity's new headquarters. As well as providing aid to emergency services in the aftermath of any terrorist incidents, operations director Marcus Stephan said the money will help with response to rail accidents and floods, and will fund first aid training in communities and emergency awareness at city businesses. "Since 9/11, Bali and Madrid, we've taken a hard look at our emergency support function," he said. The Corporation of London kickstarted fund-raising for the £1.5m campaign with a donation of £250,000.
The Red Cross hopes to reach its target within 18 months.
ActionAid is airing a DRTV campaign, with actress and ambassador Emma Thompson, to showcase the charity's achievements in Ethiopia and a request for a £5 monthly donation. The advert will be shown on satellite and digital TV because of the prohibitive costs of terrestrial advertising and the higher concentration of Action-Aid's target group - women aged 25 and over - watching those channels. It will air several times a day throughout February and can be seen on MTV, Living, Nickelodeon and Paramount, amongst others. It opens with Thompson and follows three people whose everyday lives have been helped by ActionAid.
The Southmead Hospital Fund has enlisted Bristol's Star Radio to make an appeal for funds for the hospital's £1.5m drive to refurbish and modernise its Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. The radio station wants to raise £51,000 to fund one special-care room with six cot bays, and is encouraging listeners to save their 5p pieces with the slogan 'give me five for tiny lives'. Southmead Hospital treats about 530 sick or premature babies each year, but conditions are increasingly outdated and cramped.
The need for a new unit has become so urgent that the charity has brought its fundraising deadline forward by one year, to December 2005.