On Tuesday 15th November, we held a fundraising dinner for current and new supporters at StoneX Stadium. Guests heard first-hand from two tenants, Diana and Gary, who were in conversation with Rob Rinder.
Diana and her husband Steve moved into their Jewish Blind & Disabled flat 15 years ago after both being diagnosed with hereditary conditions. Diana said: “We went from a normal working family of four to a family where three of us were too ill to work and Steve was caring for all of us, so had to stop working too. In 2000, I ended up in hospital for a month. This was my lowest point. I came home and couldn’t move – I was young and in despair. That’s when I was told about Jewish Blind & Disabled. I don’t know where we would be without them. JBD has given us hope and we can live independently with support around us for when we need it.”
Gary and his wife Yvonne contacted Jewish Blind & Disabled during Covid as his mobility was declining and he was struggling with few steps into his bungalow. At that time, they didn’t have a diagnosis but in Gary’s words – “I knew something was wrong”. Shortly after moving, Gary was diagnosed with Parkinson’s. His condition has progressed in the last few years. Gary said: “I feel fortunate to live at JBD. We have peace of mind with the support from 24/7 house managers and it really is a special place to live.”
Rob Rinder said: “It is an honour to be here and to be sharing the stage with Diana and Steve, two tenants who live in the same development as my dad. It’s impossible to overstate what my dad moving into his Jewish Blind & Disabled flat has meant to us as a family. It is a special place to call home, a community, a mishpacha. JBD is a real gift to the community and the quality and professionalism within the charity is without question the best I have ever had the privilege of dealing with.”
Huge thank you to everyone who joined us. We are delighted to have raised just over £200,000 to date. However, it is not too late to support us and we are hoping to reach an ambitious target of £250,000.
Speaking at the event, Jewish Blind & Disabled’s Chair, Marc Gordon said: “I have been Chair of Jewish Blind & Disabled for just over a year now, but I have been a supporter for over 20 years. I thought I knew a fair amount about the work of the charity and its impact, however, the more I learn and see, the more impressed I am with our unique offering and how it is delivered. I have seen how the range of services we provide are truly life changing for people with physical disabilities and / or vision impairments. We have ambitious plans, but these are only possible due to the generous support we receive from across the community.”
Following the event, Chief Executive, Lisa Wimborne commented: “This event was a fantastic opportunity to shine a spotlight on Jewish Blind & Disabled. All too often I hear people tell me they have never heard of us before they needed our support. Many of the people in the room were new to Jewish Blind & Disabled. I was delighted that they heard first-hand from Diana and Gary, who spoke from the heart and articulated how their lives have changed since moving into their Jewish Blind & Disabled flats.”