Guide Dogs is holding a virtual tea party fundraising event today, and is hoping to establish a new Guinness World Record.
The charity normally organises a tea party fundraiser every year on 21 April, on National Tea Day. But since this year’s event cannot be held in-person, it is going virtual.
Supporters are encouraged to have a cup of tea at home, donate its value to the charity and send over a selfie of their tea parties between 3pm and 4pm.
The Guinness World Records’ team will be counting how many selfies the charity receives. Guide Dogs hopes to beat the current record of 500 participants. The Facebook page of the event currently has more than 5,000 participants registered.
Celebrities supporting the event include actor Martin Clunes and businesswoman Deborah Meaden.
Guide Dogs said that, like most charities at this time, it is losing fundraising income due to the consequences of the lockdown.
Pam White, fundraising manager, said: “Over the last few years our wonderful supporters have been hosting tea parties around the country on National Tea Day and donating the proceeds to Guide Dogs. Whilst that isn’t possible in person this year, we’re excited to host our first ever virtual tea party, which will give everyone the chance to join our #GuideDogsFamily and make a difference.
“In these uncertain times we have adapted our services so we can continue to help those with sight loss. We also remain committed to the welfare of our 8,000 dogs, which are being cared for across the UK. Our income is dropping and it costs £13 a day to support each of our life changing dogs – that’s £100,000 every single day.
“Donating the cost of your cuppa on National Tea Day will ensure people with sight loss don’t feel alone now, and in the future.”
Last year's event raised £60,000 for the charity.