Maria Relief Fund: A New Hope for Distressed Children and Families

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When we founded the Maria Relief Fund in 2005, with 30 years' experience of helping distressed children, our guiding principle was "to love a stranger." Our goal is to bring relief to families and children suffering poverty and distress, whether due to political oppression, natural disaster or any other cause.

We are strongly committed to equality and do not discriminate according to ethnicity, gender or religion. We promote equal opportunities for people suffering discrimination and inequality, particularly by facilitating access to education: We want to empower youngsters and women to improve their own lives.

Maria Relief Fund has established a child-sponsorship scheme in Ukraine, whose everyday management is entrusted to a team of local volunteers. Their natural understanding of their own country's society and culture are invaluable, and they enjoy personal contact with the children and families involved.

Being a small organisation, our capabilities are in some ways restricted. But our limited size allows us to maintain personal relationships with both supporters and beneficiaries. Equally importantly, we are run entirely by volunteers, which means that almost every penny we raise can go directly to those in need. This makes us an invaluable alternative to the increasingly corporate larger charities.

One Week's Sponsored Cycling - see under Projects

 

We are a small charity with a big mission

Here at Maria Relief Fund we believe that charity stems from an unconditional love and respect for fellow human beings. As part of this belief, we see helping those in less fortunate situations as a basic obligation.

Kristina's Family Tree in Ukraine

Kristina's Family Tree in Ukraine

As stated in the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights, all people, regardless of race, gender or any other distinction, have a right to food, shelter, education and liberty. As a charitable organisation with the power and resources to help protect such rights, it is our duty to do so in a non-discriminatory manner. We recognize that those members of society most affected by discrimination and inequality are often the most disadvantaged, so we direct our work particularly toward the assistance of women and distressed children. By concentrating predominantly on children we aim to create hope for a better  future.

Read more: We are a small charity with a big mission

 

Childrens' Art

These are drawings and paintings by some of our children in Ukraine

Read more: Childrens' Art

 

Why the fish?

You may have wondered why our organisation's logo features the symbol of a fish.

This sign is perhaps most often associated with Christianity; ichthys, the ancient Greek word for fish, is spelled from the first letters of the phrase, "Jesus Christ, God's Son, the Saviour." It may be understood to represent abundance and faith, reminding us of the Gospel account of how Jesus miraculously fed the multitude with five loaves and two fish.

In early Christianity, the fish was also used as a secret symbol to mark the meetings places and safe havens, distinguishing friend from foe at a time when Christianity was being persecuted by the Roman Empire.

Read more: Why the fish?

 

Maria Relief Fund
20 Morris Road, Lewes
East Sussex BN7 2AT

Registered Charity No.
1113029

Email:
info@mariarelieffund.org.uk

Copyright © 2017 Maria Relief Fund. All Rights Reserved.
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