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COVID-19 – how we are responding

25 March 2020

With the arrival of coronavirus (COVID-19), we are all facing challenging times – for many of us, the biggest challenge in our lifetime. People with and affected by kidney disease are particularly worried at this time, as they face additional struggles to those they already encounter on a daily basis.

We wanted to let you all know what we are doing to respond to the unprecedented situation created by the coronavirus pandemic.

What we are doing

Our vision is to free lives from the restrictions, fear and anxiety of living with kidney disease. In these unprecedented times this is even more challenging. We remain committed to that and are working hard to ensure the charity can continue working towards that goal now, and in the long term.

Supporting people with kidney disease, and our researchers

This is an uncertain and difficult time for people living with kidney disease, their families and friends. We are doing everything we can to support those affected by kidney disease, and to ensure our research will continue and make life better for them in the future.

We are directing those seeking guidance about care and services for people living with kidney disease to Kidney Care UK and the National Kidney Federation (NKF), our partner charities who can provide the most up-to-date information.

We are doing everything we can to keep our research going and we are determined to safeguard it for the future.

We are providing reassurance and support to our researchers and working with them to understand the impact COVID-19 has on them. As a funder, we want to support them and minimise the effect it has on their research.

Many of our researchers are also health care professionals who are urgently needed in the front line to deliver patient care now, and to treat patients. We are reassuring them that any committed funding they were due to receive from us won’t be affected, even if their research is paused or delayed.

Keeping everyone safe

The health and wellbeing of our beneficiaries, volunteers and staff is a priority.

As you’ll have seen, many events across the country have been postponed or cancelled for the health and safety of everyone concerned. While these decisions are crucial for safety, our dedicated supporters were training hard and raising funds to drive research, so are understandably very disappointed. We are keeping in touch with all of them about next steps and plans to hold these events in the future.

We have also postponed or cancelled other face-to-face activities and meetings we had planned – from events showcasing our brilliant research, to scientific meetings.

And our research involving people has been affected - some of our trials have paused in this unprecedented time.

At present the work of the Peterborough office is being carried out by our staff who are now working from home.

We have closed our charity shops in Dalkeith, Redcar and Exeter to the public.

Our role as a charity

Over recent months, we have been developing our new strategy, which will be announced shortly. It is an ambitious strategy, but one we believe is vital to improve the lives of people with kidney disease.

This unprecedented situation doesn’t change our new plans – in fact, it underlines the importance of them. We are even more determined to make change and will continue to work to deliver what we have promised. We recognise that the current financial situation will make this a bigger challenge.

We expect all our fundraising activities, including events, to be severely affected. People taking part in our fundraising raffles and appeals, our loyal supporters, may be less able to help us during these uncertain times, or may find it more difficult than before. The truth is, we need their support now more than ever.

We rely on our generous supporters to preserve and drive forward our work. We are urgently seeking new ways to raise funds. We want all our supporters to stay with us and new ones to join us.

Together, when we emerge from this, we will be even stronger.

How you can help

As well as affecting the people we serve – those affected by kidney disease – it is clear COVID-19 will significantly affect Kidney Research UK.

Right now, we are adapting how we carry out our work to make sure we raise the funds to keep our vital research going to make life better for people with kidney disease. We will be looking at all our planned spending and will ensure every penny spent is focused in the right places that will have the biggest impact.

We are aiming to preserve our contacts, and relationships, so that we can seek their help to rescue, revive and rebuild the charity’s work when the time is right.

We need your help more than ever before:

  • If you feel able to donate, please do.
  • Follow us on social media and become a part of the #TEAMKIDNEY community
  • Share our messages to help us reach more people. Tell them about our research – why we need to #keepresearchgoing and why #researchmatters. Tell them about the realities of kidney disease.
  • If you are affected by kidney disease, get in touch with us to share your story and join Kidney Voices.

Please keep in touch

 

Thank you so much for your support. It is so important.

 

Sandra Currie, Chief Executive

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