Whenever possible Poetry Space loves to help small charities or community projects to raise money and we do this through our book sales and by collaborating with other companies. In the summer of 2010 I was approached by 88 year old hicky (pen name) because he had a delightful collection of poems and cartoons that he had drawn himself using Microsoft paint programme. His idea was to benefit a charity that helped elderly people in some way. After an initial brush off from the biggest UK charity in this field we turned to small UK charity Contact the Elderly because though they are small they do have branches across the country. The core of these branches are volunteers who offer to host tea parties in their own homes on a Sunday for a group of isolated elderly people and volunteer drivers who take them there. The meetings are monthly and they have 75 group now all actively helping our older citizens to feel valued and cared for by offering, tea, cake and friendship.
In the cold winter weather some volunteers also called on elderly people with the group to see if they were okay although this is beyond their remit as volunteers.
In 2012 we shall be releasing a sparkling new edition of the book with a new cover drawn by young artist Toby Morgan, together with a CD of the poems put together with music by vibrant New York Theatre company, On the Square Productions. Many thanks to Rob Benson and Duane Tollison in NY who are currently working on the project for us.
It is early days but we are hoping that profits from the new edition and CD can also benefit a small community project in New York that works with senior citizens. They well deserve it. Our seniors may now have reached older age however they have much to offer us in terms of their wisdom and experience. Like all of us they want to feel valued and listened to.
Look out for the book in 2012. Contact the Elderly have already received £250 from the first edition. This is likely to raise a lot more.