Chain of Hope at Coventry Cathedral

On Thursday 1st April 2021 a Chain of Hope was installed in Coventry Cathedral. It is approximately 650 metres long and breaks the record for the longest paper chain in the UK. 

During the third Covid-19 lockdown trustees, workers and volunteers for Coventry based charity, SHARE have been raising money for the charity. The Chain of Hope was made by SHARE volunteers and sponsered by supporters. Over the past twenty-seven years with help from members of Coventry Cathedral congregation SHARE has carried hope to disadvantaged children in Romania – one of the poorest regions of Europe. The fundraising aims to raise awareness as well as funds to support Jim’s House, a home in Sibiu County for three young disabled Romanians who would otherwise be confined to an institution.

For the last 11 years SHARE has sent young volunteer Occupational Therapists and Speech and Language Therapists to work in SPERANTA (translates as hope in Romanian), a home for disabled children in Sibiu. When the SPERANTA children reach the age of 18, they must transfer to local adult institutions. These centres for adults do not offer the same level of care, as adults are expected to be more independent. The staffing ratios are much reduced and the institutions offer a bleak future to any youngsters entering them. Young people with disabilities do not cope well with this situation.

Jim's House

During the summer of 2019, SHARE renovated a house in a nearby village in order to provide a better life three of these young people. The house is called Jim’s House in memory of a generous donor who gave the funds that has enabled SHARE to set up the house. The residents are helped with skills to take care of themselves and their home, which includes a garden area and chickens. They are helped with shopping, cleaning and the daily care of the house. 

After a few months living in Jim’s House, one of the residents, Bianca, sent this message; “I miss my friends at Speranta but I am so happy that I have a normal life now. I feel that I am a normal girl now. I like that I can get to cook, clean sew and draw and have a family life. This is the best thing that ever happened to me. I am normal now.”

SHARE need to raise £2000 a month to pay for the round the clock care of the three young people. The Covid-19 lockdown prevented them from arranging normal fundraising events, so the Chain of Hope will help to secure the future for the three young people.

SHARE also see this as an opportunity to spread the message of HOPE at Easter as we move out of lockdown and head towards an exciting year with the start of the City of Culture.

Find out more about SHARE and donate here.


First published on: 7th April 2021