Methodists raise more than £70,000 to help victims of the Cumbria floods

A Methodist fundraising appeal has raised £74,432 to helpvictims of the floods which struck Cumrbia in November.

Methodist Churches across the UK have sent individual donations toThe Cumbria Foundation totalling £36,000 while contributions to TheMission in Britain Fund have reached £38,432.77 with money stillcoming in. The Methodist Church in Britain sent out a cheque for£38,432.77 to the Cumbria Appeal Fund this week.

The floods destroyed businesses and homes in the county,particularly in Cockermouth, which was badly hit by thedevastation.

Revd Richard Teal, Chair of the Cumbria District, said: "This moneywill make an enormous difference to people. Cockermouth has beengoing through a sense of bereavement. All the media attention hassubsided and people are left with the reality of it. Things havebeen held up because of the snow and the bad weather. People whowere hoping to get back into their homes in the next few monthswill now have that put back by a few more months."

Cockermouth Lorton Street Methodist Church is opening from 10am to12pm six days a week to offer people free coffee and advice. TheMana Credit Union is also using the Church as a base to help peoplewith debt management.

Revd Sue Edwards, a Methodist minister in Cockermouth, has beenoffering pastoral support to people in the town along with othermembers of the clergy. "The whole area was completely devastated,"she said. "The housing estate on the other side of the RiverDerwent is like a ghost town. At the moment we are trying to helppeople out financially while they are waiting for their insurance,but there is a good community spirit."

A Foodbank project run by Churches Together in Cockermouth isproviding people with food parcels, and hot meals are still beingserved at Christ Church in Cockermouth.