Successful Harris Garden fundraising event for Reading Mencap

Alex Douglas
Author's position
Community Engagement Coordinator

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On Sunday 8 September 2019 the local learning disability charity Reading Mencap held a fundraising event at the beautiful Harris Garden, on the University of Reading campus. It was opened by their Patron, Sir John Madjeski and their Chair of Trustees, together with their Ambassadors who are also Reading Mencap service users.

The British weather didn’t disappoint for once and the sun was out all afternoon, creating a perfect atmosphere for an afternoon of browsing the stalls there. Local businesses with stalls included La Radiance, Hartland Fudge, Gaythorne Vintage, Fool The Bees and Angelfish.

Meanwhile, Reading Mencap were out in full force with a range of staff and volunteers running their own stalls consisting of tombola, raffle, arts and crafts, plants and games. They even had the CEO of Reading Mencap, Mandi Smith, selling homemade cakes and jam!

Outside the garden another refreshments and cake stall was open with donations of cakes from the local community organisation Free Cakes For Kids – which regularly helps Reading Mencap at their fundraising events. Kind donations were also made by Laurels Garden Centre and HuaweiUK. They were also supported by a group of 14-year-old students from Spain that helped with setting up, running stalls and, of course, packing away.

Throughout the day the charity saw around 220 paying adults while children got in free. This is the fourth year running that Reading Mencap has had a fair at Harris Garden and this year bought in a total of £1977.