Maria usually holds a big fundraiser each year and it usually takes place in a hall. This year, volunteer Charlotte had a great idea of holding an open day at the shelter, so that people could come and meet the animals, browse stalls, enjoy refreshments and have a go at a tombola and raffle. It would mean people could also reserve animals and give details for home checks.
As part of Charlottes college course, she set about organising the day with help from Maria and the other volunteers.
The eve of the Open Day
A huge amount of preparation was involved including where to put animals for the day, where stalls would be, who would be there to help, what refreshments would be available, etc.
When all was planned and ready, the volunteers worked hard to get everything out of the back room at the shelter, sort it and set onto tables. It was a big task, as there were some massive spiders in the room! The endless boxes of books did get a bit much for Lee and me!haha
When evening came, there was still a lot to sort, but it was left for the morning. Maria and her volunteers needed to rest for the big day ahead.
The Big Day
On the morning of the open day, everyone arrived early and set about finishing all preparations. Everything was ready just in time for the gate to open to visitors at 12noon. My Mum, Hazel welcomed the first visitors and enjoyed a busy day at the front gate with people coming and going all day.
Most visitors made a beeline for Maria and she had a good chat with lots of lovely people.
The refreshments proved hugely popular and Louise in the kitchen enjoyed them too, having sneaky bites here and there!
The animals were well behaved, except one naughty chicken determined to escape from her temporary enclosure. Volunteer Lee had fun catching her every 5 minutes!
We managed to rehome four guinea pigs, two chinchillas (to volunteer Jade!haha) and a hamster was reserved.
A Nice Amount Raised
It was a beautiful sunny day (poor volunteers got sunburn!) and it was nice to hear good feedback from the visitors who were surprised to find the shelter bigger than they thought and some were surprised to find it existed at all!
The day went very well and was worth all the hard work. We were very happy and grateful to raise a wonderful £900 on the day.
A very big thank you to all the hard working volunteers that made it happen and to all the visitors who helped us enjoy the day and raise such a lovely amount for the animals. Well done Charlotte and Maria….maybe same again next year?!