What I would like to achieve during my mayoral year is constrained by the role. In its simplest form, it has a ceremonial content, attending civic events and the like, but there is also a fundraising element.
The civic events are a fantastic opportunity to meet one’s peers from around the County while the fundraising is a way of helping particular groups that you care about.
In my case my nominated charities are-;
- The Alzheimer’s Society
United against dementia
In Hampshire alone there are over 24,000 people living with some form of dementia. The Alzheimer’s Society offer information, care and support to people with dementia, their families, friends and carers. Their services include Singing for the Brain® sessions, Dementia Advisers and Side by Side volunteers who support people to keep doing the things they enjoy. Dementia Support Workers offer practical guidance to cope with day-to-day challenges and prepare for the future. They also offer information to people who are worried about their memory and ongoing support to people affected by dementia. In Hampshire alone there are over 24,000 people living with some form of dementia. The Alzheimer’s Society are the only UK charity investing in research into dementia care, cause, cure and prevention. They fight for the rights of everyone affected by dementia and campaign to keep it firmly at the top of the political agenda. They raise awareness and push for a more dementia-friendly society so people with the condition can live without fear and prejudice.
- National Autistic Society, South Hampshire Branch
A self-funded voluntary group supporting children, young people and adults with autism and Asperger syndrome, and their families.
There are an increasing number of people with autism, including Asperger syndrome, in the local area. There is often social isolation of people with autism and their families. Living and working with these people brings great rewards as well as challenges. The South Hampshire Branch of the National Autistic Society is a self-funded voluntary group supporting children, young people and adults with autism and Asperger syndrome, and their families, which provides a Parent support group in Bishopstoke, a Family youth club & LEGO club in Chandlers Ford, a children’s social group and adult’s social group in Southampton and access to local teenage youth clubs. They also run a resource library, social events, training courses and access to a wealth of advice and information.
- Wildern Opportunity Group, A Special Needs Pre School
For children with special needs to enjoy group play and develop learning skills and support, advice and friendship for their parents.
Wildern Opportunity Group are celebrating their 30th Anniversary this year. They were initially set up after a group of professionals realised that there was no provision for children with special needs in the Hedge End Village area. In the early days the group was only open for two sessions a week and used a spare room at Wildern School. Over the past three decades the sessions have evolved to include a fully inclusive pre-school and all sessions are held at the Hedge End 2000 Centre.They provide high staff ratios, a welcome, safe and fun environment which is nurturing and fully inclusive for children to learn and grow.
- Hedge End, West End & Botley Scout Groups
Scouts bring communities together, build better futures and give young people skills for life.
The Scout Association is the UK’s biggest mixed youth organisation with over 520,000 members. They change lives by offering young people aged 6 to 25 fun and challenging activities, unique experiences, everyday adventure and the chance to help others so that they make a positive impact in their communities. Scouts help children and young adults reach their full potential, develop skills including teamwork, time management, leadership, initiative, planning, communication, self-motivation, cultural awareness and commitment. They help young people to get jobs, save lives and even change the world. The Mayor’s Appeal for 2018/2019 will raise money for scout groups in Hedge End, West End and Botley which falls under the Itchen North District.
With help from the Eastleigh Borough Council Mayoral team and a great group of friends, we have formed a Mayor’s Appeals committee where we have generated many fundraising ideas and are putting a programme of events together. Donations to my charity appeal are very welcome but there are numerous other ways to support the Mayor’s Appeal; such as attending events, volunteering at an event or even suggesting a fundraising idea.