The charity started 2020 with all of their premises fully booked for the year to help as many families as possible who have a child suffering from cancer or a cancer related disease or families who have lost a child to cancer.
With the emerging threat of COVID-19, Calum’s Cabin took the difficult decision to cancel all stays in their Cabin, Cottage, Mountstuart and Dumfries House as well as cancelling 12 weeks’ worth of stays in a gifted premise in St Andrew’s. This is whilst also maintaining a waiting list, as with previous years, primarily for summer school holidays.
Calum’s Cabin have continued offering real “home from home” support to families who have to relocate to Glasgow when their child is undergoing long term treatment at either Glasgow’s Children Hospital or at The West of Scotland Beatson Centre.
Calum’s Cabin strives to be there to offer continuous and responsive hands-on support to families when needed, even during a global pandemic. Despite the added stress and uncertainty of COVID-19, some families have been united in the Glasgow flats with children being off school and better able to travel mid-week to be with their sibling and both parents.
- COVID-19 has brought further stress and anxiety to families with a child with a suppressed or very low immune system, yet all have felt extremely safe and secure in the flats provided by Calum’s Cabin
- Within a week, Calum’s Cabin had managed to organise supermarket deliveries and laundry collections – this has ensured families could stay at home as much as possible during lockdown
- Glasgow flat families all received Easter eggs, cupcake and afternoon tea deliveries every few weeks and mindfulness sessions to help them cope with the pressure of lockdown and the pandemic
- Patio furniture has been purchased to allow the families with balconies to enjoy outside space without comprising any immunity
Calum’s Cabin continue to work closely with Glasgow Children’s Hospital, Beatson West of Scotland Cancer centre and outreach nurses/CLIC social workers in Glasgow, Aberdeen, Inverness and the Highland and Islands to ensure they all know the flats are available for families if they need them. Whilst they do not advocate or campaign in the traditional sense, their usual fundraising efforts are prolific and demonstrate a significant ability to ‘get people alongside;’ a key skill in influencing others to support their incredible cause. Although COVID-19 has prevented many of their fundraising plans from progressing, Calum’s Cabin has shown incredible grit and innovation in designing new methods of raising income during a pandemic.
With a growing portfolio of capital assets now in the charity’s possession, Calum’s Cabin has successfully secured permanent legacy through the investment made by the STV Children’s Appeal and other contributors. With ongoing support and encouragement, this legacy should continue to grow, and forever be able to provide an immeasurably valuable support to families.
Calum’s Cabin is the type of project which shouldn’t have to exist, but with thanks to the fearless and courageous passion of those who have experienced the loss of a child, it is the exact type of project families in this situation will be eternally grateful for. As financial stress is one of the pressures Calum’s Cabin aims to alleviate, it is not appropriate to raise funds directly from the beneficiary. For this reason, it is likely this project will always rely on some form of external grant or community/ corporate fundraising to cover their costs. However, the team continue to demonstrate considerable skill and success in building a diverse portfolio of income to meet this need.
“Thank you all so much for everything. You have made our time in Glasgow with Louise so much easier and stress free, Louise loved it in the flat, it’s beautiful and she felt so at home, we spent our last Christmas together there and we will cherish it always.”