Gok’s charity of the month – October: Make A Difference Trust

Make A Difference TrustI have known about the Make A Difference Trust for over a year now and I love the fact that they just make charity so much fun, yet raise money for an incredibly important cause!

There are so many incredible performers out there who bring so much joy to our lives through their performances- but in their own lives suffer in terrible ways both emotionally and physically and this is such a fantastic way to help support such wonderful people!

Please help in whatever way you can my darlings! Love you xxx

The Make A Difference Trust is an entertainment industry charity that supports those working both on stage and behind the scenes through times of chronic ill health and financial hardship. The charity actively works to support individuals to find work and once in employment, not let their health condition be the reason for them to fall out of employment. Predominantly the charity supports those with an HIV diagnosis however it also supports those with Cancer, mobility issues and cardiac problems. The charity works nationally through a network of theatres, academies and regional community service providers. The charity also works internationally through its dedicated “Points of Difference “ programme which currently focusses on southern Africa

The charity started 21 years ago when, as West End Cares – and later Theatrecares – a group of actors and writers witnessed the terrible devastation AIDS was wreaking on their friends, partners and loved ones. Whilst there are now treatments to help promote a longer and more active life, there is still no cure and the Trust is dedicated not just to support those living with the virus but through education and awareness programming to skill up a generation to be informed and know how to protect themselves.

Working in the entertainment industry as many people know is a passion, it is hard work but also very rewarding. For those audience members watching weather in live theatre, the big screen or at home in front of the TV, what is portrayed is fantasy, characters , a distant world. Unfortunately however, for many, when the make-up comes off and they return to real-life, the continued burden of ill-health, financial insecurity and growing examples of industry depression set in. The Trust is there to support when needed but also to remind audiences that behind the painted mask is a real person with multi-faceted problems and worries that if not dealt with can cause unemployment, poor health management and onward depression.

Our ask is that we would like people to sign up to our mailing lists, find out more about our work, support our events and perhaps event contribute a little to our programme work. We are always looking for fundraising ideas, volunteers and corporate sponsors, indeed anything which helps make our work as effective and far reaching as possible.