A SILENT auction with more than 70 prizes saw a group of Cumbria fundraisers raise almost £9,000 for children’s charity the NSPCC and St Mary’s Hospice in Ulverston.

The NSPCC Furness Fundraisers and NSPCC Kirkby Londsdale were joined by members of the St Mary’s team in gathering the huge array of prizes, which included a state-of-the-art pizza oven, a private flight experience and a stay in a luxury holiday cottage, and setting up the auction online.

Loretta Blackburn, Chair of NSPCC Furness Fundraisers, said: “There have been so many challenges over the past year, but when you’re fundraising for children and people who are desperately ill, you can’t just give up because this is when they need you most.

“We know that children who suffer abuse have been affected even worse through the lockdown as, in some cases, their schools and the places they feel safe have been closed off to them. We also know what a terrifying year it has been for people living with life limiting and terminal conditions.

“We have a fantastic team of fundraisers here in Furness who have worked exceptionally hard, along with NSPCC Kirkby Lonsdale and the team at St Mary’s. We’ve all been so motivated, and even when they’ve given their all they’re still looking for ways they can help more.

“We would all like to thank everyone who donated lots for our auction. In what has been a really hard year for everyone we’ve found levels of generosity higher than ever.”

The auction was held using online bidding site Givergy, which allowed the fundraisers to raise an astounding £8,648 to split between the two charities.

NSPCC Cumbria Fundraising Coordinator Sandra Jones said: “We are so lucky in Cumbria to have such committed and talented fundraisers, who find a way of overcoming every challenge to make a difference. I’m incredibly proud of the work they have all done, and so grateful that they have kept the children we work with at the forefront of their minds.

“The last year has been a particular challenge for all of us, but children who were already missing out on the happy, healthy childhoods they deserve will need our support more than ever.”

If you would like to help support the work of NSPCC’s Cumbria, or would like more information on fundraising for the NSPCC, please contact Sandra Jones on sandra.jones2@nspcc.org.uk