Architects Benevolent Society £75,000 emergency Coronavirus appeal

An urgent appeal for donations to help support the architectural community and their families through the coronavirus crisis.

Architects Benevolent Society (ABS) is urgently asking for donations to help support the wider architectural community and their families through the coronavirus crisis. The ABS helpline has already seen a sharp 60% increase in enquiries and the need for their support services will continue to increase over the coming weeks and months as the architectural industry experiences the full impact of COVID-19.

"Suddenly we see ourselves in uncertain times and the world feels like a very different place," External Relations Manager Mark Thomas states. "We're working tirelessly to offer our support with our dedicated welfare team at its centre, delivering the help that is needed on a level never seen before. But we need your help."

The emergency appeal fund will ensure ABS, along with their partner organisations, can offer their full support services to increasing numbers of those in need. This includes financial grants, mental health support, debt management advice, redundancy support, legal advice and housing assistance. Since lockdown began on 23 March, ABS has given out over £135,000 in direct financial support. Their ability to provide immediate assistance has meant that they have been able to offer a lifeline to those experiencing long delays with Universal Credit, government schemes, and those who are not eligible for any state support. 

ABS is also expecting an increase in the need for mental health support and have recently launched a series of wellbeing webinars in partnership with RIBA. Funding will ensure ABS can expand this offering, as well as the vital wellbeing and therapeutic support they currently offer through their partnership with Anxiety UK. 

With all planned external fundraising events cancelled for 2020, income has decreased at a time when it is needed most.

ABS President Jane Duncan OBE states: "We have all been affected by the impact of the COVID-19 virus. Those with good support networks may feel better able to cope with the stresses of social distancing than those of us who are trying to cope alone, but its tough on all of us whether mentally, physically or emotionally. It is good to know that the ABS is still there, fully functioning and able to take your calls."

Mark Thomas adds: "We're grateful for any support that is offered, to help us support individuals, families and students as they go through this tough time dealing with the impact of coronavirus. On behalf of everyone at The Society, thank you so much for being with us through these uncertain times."

To donate to this campaign please visit: absnet.org.uk/support-us/covid-19-emergency-appeal

If you would like to know more about the appeal, or would like an alternative method to donate please email fundraising@absnet.org.uk

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COVID-19