A coffee day, not just a morning
Claire Oakley explains how Stafford Baptist Church safely went about inviting people to its building to fundraise for Tearfund earlier this year
Back in July we saw the heartbreaking, and pitiful pictures on our televisions, of starving babies, children and adults in Yemen, South Sudan and Syria. Families were packed in tents with no sanitation, nor safe distancing - and no healthcare for Covid 19…
As a response Danielle (Leigh), our minister, asked our church if we could hold coffee mornings, or afternoon teas in August to raise money for Tearfund.
I had just come out of shielding, but felt very strongly that l wanted to help this desperate situation, especially when we are so fortunate ourselves. I decided a coffee morning wouldn't raise enough money, so opted for a full coffee day from 10.30 until 6pm! I had hoped to raise £50 pounds. As it happened, that amount came in even before the day itself.
I invited people on the phone and organised a rota for two people to arrive every half hour, with safe distancing, masks, hand sanitizers, paper cups, napkins and wooden utensils. It was paramount that everyone was kept safe.
Church members and friends brought gifts for the tombola and sales table, and spent generously for such a worthy cause. One member made two beautiful cakes, a chocolate one, the other coffee and walnut, which we sold by the slice with coffee and tea. A friend also loaned her gazebo, which was ideal as rain was forecast, and it was great to sit underneath.
If anyone cancelled l quickly filled their slot, and if people couldn't make the day, they kindly dropped in donations, l also asked everyone to Gift Aid if possible.
It was a most enjoyable day, and ran smoothly with my husband making teas and coffees, and slicing cake all day. The money kept rising for about two weeks afterwards, until finally we reached the amazing total of £565!
I was overwhelmed with the response, support and generosity of my church, local churches and friends making it all possible. It was a lot of hard work but so rewarding.
Claire Oakley with two friends who supported the coffee day
Claire's husband Tony making refreshments all day