Published: 06:54, 12 October 2020
| Updated: 16:39, 16 October 2020
A leading charity in South East England has launched a fantastic six-month campaign using bespoke bookmarks to raise much-needed funds.
Aspens, a charity that supports those with learning disabilities, autism and associated learning needs, has like many other groups been hit by the Covid-19 pandemic and is urgently seeking ways to raise funds so that it can continue to provide its invaluable and vital support to some of the most vulnerable people in society.
Some of those desperately-needed services include round-the-clock care, daily virtual activity sessions and a Live Chat helpline.
Part of its ambitious #UnlockingCare campaign includes the release of a collection of bespoke bookmarks, including a limited number of a ‘lucky’ golden edition, individually designed by those the charity cares for.
The campaign’s target is to ultimately sign up 1000 new regular givers. Anyone who pledges to donate to Aspens on a monthly basis, whether £5 or £50, will receive the collection of six bespoke bookmarks.
The colourful bookmarks, which feature information about each designer, will also be given out to all those buying a book in Aspens’ five Kent and Sussex charity shops while six lucky recipients of a special ‘golden’ bookmark will win a unique gift, handmade by service users at Aspens’ Roebuck Centre.
Other opportunities to support the #UnlockingCare campaign include participation in a series of fun events, starting off with a virtual ‘Halloween Spooky 5K’ run on the weekend of Saturday, October 31 and Sunday, November 1.
There will also be a virtual Christmas Quiz on Thursday, December 3.
Some of those already onboard with the new campaign include Tunbridge Wells Mayor Cllr Joy Podbury and her Escort Bob Podbury and they will be virtually ‘opening’ the event.
Greg Clark, Tunbridge Wells Conservative MP, has said he’ll be putting on his running shoes and joining in to show his support.
“The last six months of the Covid-19 crisis have revealed just how essential organisations such as Aspens are,” said Mr Clark.
“By adapting to the challenges of coronavirus to continue to deliver services to adults and children with disabilities, complex needs and autism, Aspens has helped hundreds of individuals cope during an immensely stressful period while seeing resources stretched to the limit.
“This is why I hope you will join me in supporting the Aspens 5K Virtual Run to raise funding so that it can continue to provide its incredibly valuable work for many more years to come.”
Aspens CEO Robert Shanahan highlighted the “tough year” for the charity and the need for additional support.
“Our services are urgently needed by those that are dependent on us and we desperately want to be able to continue to provide the exceptional level of support that we are currently giving.
“The bookmarks designed by our service users are fantastic and a wonderful example of the way in which Aspens provides opportunities for those often on the fringes of our society to contribute and live life to its full potential.
“We sincerely hope people are able to provide this urgently needed support to us by becoming regular givers and I wish everyone the best of luck in finding a lucky golden bookmark!”
Tina, whose autistic teenage daughter Anna has received support for serious mental health concerns by Aspens’ Family Specialist Support Team over the past months, is one of many people that depends on the charity.
“We can’t thank Aspens enough,” she said. “They have absolutely saved us and we would have been lost without them.”