CHARITIES throughout Ayrshire are facing tough times during lockdown.

Relying on fundraising events and charity shops, they are now putting their faith in big hearted Ayrshire fundraisers who are out there working hard to keep the charities afloat.

Ayrshire Cancer Support provides transport to hospital appointments; complementary therapies and support for patients and families.

They have a strong team of volunteers and their dream is to build a new drop-in centre in Ayr similar to their Kilmarnock base and rely on people like Stefan Nelson who has pledged to give up alcohol for a whole year.

Irvine Times: Stefan is giving up alcohol for a year Stefan is giving up alcohol for a year

Stefan said: “Ayrshire Cancer Support does incredible work in helping people who have cancer so I would like to do my bit and help them by raising as much money as possible to help them continue with the work they do.

“So, for one whole year I am going to take the plunge and give up alcohol for a year.”

The charity is asking people to use their daily exercise by raising funds with a memory walk this year.

The walks represent standing together with anyone who is undergoing treatment for cancer or in special memory of someone who you have lost to the disease.

The name of the person you are walking for is inscribed on a tag to hang from the Hope and Memory tree in the drop-in centre in Kilmarnock.

Irvine Times: Charities like Whiteley’s Retreat need donations to survive.Charities like Whiteley’s Retreat need donations to survive.

Iain Morgan, his son Stephen and daughter Lucy held a Memory Walk for their mum Lorna walking 15 miles from Irvine Beach Park to Ayr raising £5,805 for ACS.

Iain said: “ACS helped us during some tough moments and the donations pledged are amazing and Lorna has continued to be my inspirations so to have a little lasting memorial in the garden is a meaningful and unique way to remember her.”

It costs £21,913 to run The Ayrshire Hospice every day and over two thirds of hospice funding come from donations.

One of the big fundraisers of the year was the Burns Supper which will now take the form of an online event on Friday, February 26.

Britain’s Got Talent winner Jai McDowall will be singing on the night along with classical soprano Nicola Cassells with Robbie Duncan delivering the Immortal Memory.

And you can have your dinner delivered from the Ellisland Hotel if you opt for that ticket for the Supper or prepare your own haggis feast for the £10 ticket.

Irvine Times: The Ayrshire Hospice Burns Supper will be a virtual event.The Ayrshire Hospice Burns Supper will be a virtual event.

Whiteley’s Retreat in Alloway provides free therapeutic short breaks for children, young people and their families who are living with cancer or life altering illnesses.

And this year Whiteley’s is calling on people to sign up to take part in the virtual Kiltwalk between April 23-25.

“Fundraising is a huge challenge and we rely so much on our donors, including personal donation and corporate donations,” explained Maxine Allan, CEO of Whiteley’s.

“And the Kiltwalk has always been a huge event for us and that is why we are asking people to take on the virtual Kiltwalk and help us.”