Why we do what we do
We are the only UK charity that supports people with M.E. of all ages, like Sally (not her real name), 47, from Kent.
Sally told us:
“Little things that years ago took me five minutes to do can take me all day now. Even cooking a basic meal and eating correctly is so challenging. I cheat a lot with cooking, like putting fresh vegetables in tins of beans. This is how I get by. I feel ashamed that from being fully active, and going above and beyond, I have gone to scraping along, just trying to do the basics, and not even accomplishing that.”
As you can read in our annual report and accounts 2020 to 2021:
- people with M.E., like Sally, access our one-to-one information and support by phone or email six times every working day; 86% of families would feel more confident dealing with a similar issue in future, while 83% of adults had increased understanding of their rights and other support available
- our booklets, factsheets and support resources are accessed on average 25 times every day, providing vital, trusted information on living with M.E.
- 80 people with M.E., many severely affected, were able to access detailed advocacy over a 12-month period; half told us they have increased access to services and support, and better financial well-being, as a result, and our advocacy service has now been rolled out nationwide
- we reached thousands of health professionals via specialist health journals, working with people with M.E. to share detailed case studies, and spoke directly to many at the Royal College of GPs conference. One of them told us: "I saw you at last year's conference and the information you gave me has changed the way I work with people with M.E."
- around 10.4 million people had the chance to see our Big Survey statistics, interviews, letters and stories, bravely shared by people with M.E. of all ages across the UK to increase understanding of M.E. and its impact
- we are proud to be co-leading DecodeME, the world's largest M.E. DNA study, starting September 2020.
After contacting our experienced team for support, Sally told us:
"I put so much energy into masking how bad things are from people around me. It was such a relief to hear from other people via InterAction that I am not alone. You helped me with advice when I’ve been struggling. You are a fantastic service, being at the end of the phone. It is so needed. I also appreciate the awareness-raising. We want others to learn what we’ve gone through – it makes it not worthless.”
In our strategy, we promise to raise £3 to £5 for every pound we spend on fundraising, growing our income streams to deliver more services and support, and greater change. During 2019 to 2020, we raised £6.91 for every £1 invested in fundraising.
Alice, one of our Walk with M.E. fundraisers told us:
“Action for M.E. have played a vital role in my recovery and they have given me the chance to share my story in a way to help others. I’ll forever be grateful.”