Winter Extravaganza 2017

Keynsham and District Mencap Society beat the winter blues with our Winter Extravaganza  –  Charity Dinner and Auction.

On Saturday 4th February 2017 we hosted  our first independent Charity Dinner and Auction at the Saltford Golf Club in Saltford.  The event raised in excess of £3500, and was held in aid of the Society’s New Building Appeal.

130 guests arrived promptly at 7pm and were greeted with a warm welcome and a glass of prosecco, as the guests found their way to their tables live Jazz was performed exquisitely by Nicki Jefferis.  The men were very smartly dressed in black tie and the ladies looked stunning in their evening dresses.

11 auction items had been generously donated by local organisations and they included, hot air balloon ride for 2, donated by Rotork Fluid Systems.  2 tickets to the England V’s Scotland RBS 6 Nations Rugby Game, at Twickenham on 11th March, donated by Knightsbridge Personal and Corporate Solutions.  An overnight Stay for Two with Dinner Bed and Breakfast at the Celtic Manor Resort Hotel, Newport, sponsored by Barratt Homes.  1 Day race meeting ticket for 2 Adults, courtesy of Castle Combe. A case of wine, sponsored by St Monica’s Trust.  3 Course Sunday Lunch for 2, at the Michelin Starred Pony and Trap Chew Magna, courtesy of The Pony and Trap.  A bottle of House of Commons Claret signed by David Cameron and Michael Gove, kindly donated by Bob Goodman.  A case of wine, donated by Toplink Envelopes Ltd.  2 tickets to a Bath Rugby Home Game with hospitality in the President’s Lounge, courtesy of Bath Rugby Club. Canal boat ride for 10 people with afternoon tea donated by Tim Warren and finally a round of golf for 4 people courtesy of Mike Penn at the Saltford Golf club.

The catering services were provided by Haywood’s Kitchen who are based at Saltford Golf club, they were very professional, friendly and accommodating, the sumptuous 3 course meal was delicious and washed down with refreshing house wine kindly sponsored by Persimmon Homes.

The evening also included a raffle, the generosity of local businesses was overwhelming, prizes included a gift voucher from Reflections Hair Salon in Keynsham, a family day ticket to Avon Valley Country Park, afternoon tea at the Pump Room Bath, a family pass for the Roman Baths, Fashion Museum and Victoria Art Gallery, unlimited rides voucher for Weston-Super-Mare Pier, plus bottles of wine donated by regular friends of the society including Eveleighs Estate Agents.

Michael Ashbee of Davies and Way provided his expert services of auctioneer and he kept the guests buzzing and raising their bids.

Among the corporate guests at the Keynsham and District Mencap Society Charity Auction were iTeam Solutions from Saltford, VansGB of Bath and Toplink Envelopes Ltd.

The evening’s events were rounded off with some floor filling tunes courtesy of Delboy Entertainments, a regular DJ with Keynsham and District Mencap Society events, always guaranteed to play music to get everyone up dancing.

The event was called A Winter Extravaganza and it certainly lived up to its name, warming everyone up on a chilly February evening.  A great time was had by all,  and the question was asked ‘When’s the next one?   ..and ‘Next time I’m bringing two tables of guests with me!’

Checkout our facebook photo album for all the photos of the night courtesy of  Rachael Caitlin Photography.

Our big  2017/18 fundraising objective is to raise funds to enable us to obtain our own centre, this has become a necessity, as the individual clubs are held in numerous venues across Keynsham, Radstock and Bath, as the local area continues to grow it is anticipated that there will be an increase in the demand for the provision.  “If we remain as we are this will become a logistical challenge, therefore to enable us to keep costs down and continue to enhance our provision it seems prudent that we obtain our own centre which can facilitate our desire for additional sessions for our members, our own hall space, office space and extra storage needs. “ Said  Lisa O’Brien our Chair.

We provide essential support to over 150 adults and children for their social, emotional, and educational needs via our weekly social and sports clubs, one off events, minibreaks and holidays.   Members have a range of learning disabilities; conditions such as Downs Syndrome, Williams Syndrome, Cerebral Palsy, Asperger’s Syndrome, and  Autism. Some of the members also have physical disabilities.  The clubs offer a fully inclusive programme of leisure activities targeted to different age groups all aimed at providing local people with learning disabilities the same opportunities as their peers.

Over the years our offering has grown, and we now run nine projects in total, four projects are aimed at children aged 5-18, a ‘Go Explore’ club for 18-25 year olds, specifically targeted at providing age-appropriate support and encouragement into adulthood while the 18+ Club, the cornerstone of its provision is the largest with a membership of 75 plus a waiting list. There are three vital sports groups, football, fitness and boccia all providing regular exercise, support and advice in order to promote a healthier lifestyle.

All these clubs provide fun activities that encourage social development with the chance to meet and make friends in a safe and secure environment whilst also enabling valuable respite for parents and careers.

“Not only do we want everything under one roof but we also want to expand even further and provide supplementary day time activities alongside the evening and weekend pursuits. By achieving this goal we can make even more of a difference to our members’ lives.” Lisa added.