An Essex charity supporting local children living with cancer is calling on the community to ‘Go Gold’ this month to raise funds and increase awareness of the signs and symptoms of childhood cancer.
September is childhood cancer awareness month, and around 1,900 children in the UK are diagnosed with cancer each year1. Gold Geese, based in Leigh-on-Sea, provides practical and emotional support to families of children and young people fighting cancer in the Southend and Basildon areas.
Gold Geese’s tailored support ranges from funding for mental health therapy and food shop vouchers to toys, weekend trips away and practical help with travel to and from hospital.
As well as encouraging local businesses and schools to Go Gold, for 2022’s campaign the charity has teamed up with Essex train company c2c to turn one of its trains gold, decorated with information about the charity.
An online competition launches on 1st September and will encourage people to share trainspotting selfies with the gold train, to be in with the chance of winning a six-month c2c season travel pass.
Katie Southgate, founder of Gold Geese, said:
“I understand first-hand what it’s like to deal with a childhood cancer diagnosis and want local families affected to know they are not alone.
We receive no Government funding and rely on community support and fundraising to do our work. Our annual Go Gold campaign is a key opportunity for everyone in Essex to show their support for local children living with cancer.
Every September we paint the local high streets gold, with businesses and shops going all out with brilliant gold window displays. This year we’re excited to have a shiny Gold Geese train and hope to reach thousands more people in South Essex with our message.
You can help us by Going Gold at school or work by wearing yellow or gold for the day, holding a bake sale or helping us raise awareness of the signs and symptoms of childhood cancer.”
Local mum Sam whose daughter Piper was diagnosed with lymphoma, said:
“When Piper was diagnosed with cancer it was the worst day of our lives, everything changed from that day. With all the bad moments we’ve had, we’ve also had some good and life brought us Katie and Gold Geese and I’ll be forever grateful.
Gold Geese have provided us with shopping vouchers and hotel stays so we can all be together during lengthy hospital stays. They also provided days out for us, which are equally important because those days we can feel like a ‘normal’ family. Just receiving these kind gestures and help really does alleviate some of the stress and pressure that comes with a cancer diagnosis.
The support that Gold Geese provide means so much to so many people going through such horrific and life-changing times, and I’d encourage anyone with a few pounds to spare to consider donating to Gold Geese this month so more families like us can receive their support and help.”
Rob Mullen, Managing Director at c2c, said: “I am really proud that c2c is partnering with such a fantastic charity. The work Gold Geese does to support families is incredible. As a father myself, knowing that there are charities out there that can support families who find themselves in such awful circumstances is really comforting, though it is so sad that so many families in our local communities need their help.
I can’t wait to see our gold train join the fleet and help raise awareness for this brilliant charity and I’m looking forward to our colleagues getting involved with some fundraising initiatives throughout September.”
For support, information or to donate visit www.goldgeese.org.
You can also donate to Gold Geese via text. Text GOLD followed by the amount you wish to donate to 70580 (for example, GOLD 50 to donate £50). Texts cost the donation amount plus one standard network rate message.
To enter the online competition, take a photo of the Gold Geese c2c train (selfies welcome!) and share it on Instagram, tagging @GoldGeese and @c2c_rail and using the hashtags #weflytogether #gogold and #childhoodcancerawareness. Full T&Cs at www.instagram.com/goldgeese