Last week Shrewsbury Town in the Community held our annual celebration dinner, A ‘Night To Flourish’, where we recognised just some of the journey’s we have seen here in the last twelve months.
The evening was a fantastic opportunity for our supporters, partners, and friends of the community to see just some of the amazing stories that have come out of our projects in the last year. Over the course of the night we celebrated participants from all areas of the charity, including health and wellbeing, education, and our disability sports provision sessions.
We were delighted to welcome Paul Bennet as our compare for the evening. In recent years Paul has become heavily involved with Shrewsbury Town in the Community, starting with his taking part in our cycling challenge event back in 2017, and since then has helped us with a variety of fundraising events.
There was a surprise at the start of the evening as our main sponsor for the night, Shropshire Homes, donated £1,000 to the charity thanks to a cardboard cut-out of director, Howard Thorne being auctioned off at his surprise birthday party a few weeks prior. A great head-start for the total raised on the evening!
“You could have picked anyone from Head’s Up to tell their story. Everyone would have told you the exact same as I have because it’s a big thing” – Matthew Worrall, participant.
After dinner, we showcased several journey’s that we have seen across the community this year. Starting with our champion fundraiser, Paul Chettle. Paul initially took part in our Pedal2Pool event in 2018 as part of his recovery from cancer, due to further medical complications a year later, he was unable to ride in the 2019 Bike2Barnsley event and instead drove the support vehicle so that he could still be involved. Phil has met many new friends through his involvement in the community and is a great example of the kind of journey we look to take people on at Shrewsbury Town in the Community.
Keeping on the volunteering theme, we then took a look at how Geoff Freeman has become involved in our Volunteer Academy and is now our Ball Retrieval Team Coordinator. Geoff received mentoring from one of our coaches, Nigel Wellings, after his poor behaviour in school and teachers since have noted a complete transformation in him.
We recognised the impact of our partnership with Lingen Davies and our Kick Cancer programme, which has helped those within Shropshire in their recovery from the condition as participants have been able slowly become more active again and allowed them to socialise with others in a similar position to themselves.
Matt Worrall’s journey was recognised as he reported how taking part in our Head’s Up session has helped in in dealing with his diagnosed ADHD and EUPD. The sessions have helped Matt to enjoy football in a relaxed and friendly environment; he has been able to make new friends and he commented on how the sessions act as a support group for everyone involved, with everyone always checking up on each other.
“It’s a life-changing thing at Shrewsbury Town” – Paul Evison, Ben’s father.
Finally we heard about ShrewsAbility participant Ben Evison and his inspirational story combating a muscle wasting condition. Eighteen months ago Ben’s condition had worsened to such a degree that he was staying in local hospice Hope House, and it was then that his parents decided they had to do something to try and help Ben become more active. Since then Ben has been attending our weekly disability sessions every Monday, and they have helped grow his confidence, helping him to make friends and even helping him to attend school for the first time. Ben’s story received a standing ovation from all the guests at the Gala Dinner.
We saw one more surprise at the end of the evening as our departing Head of Trustees, Ryan Jervis announced he was stepping back and was thanked for all his hard work by CEO, Jamie Edwards and Shrewsbury Town chairman, Roland Wycherly. It was then revealed that our first ever ‘Ryan Jervis Team Member of the Year Award’ was to be presented to Nigel Wellings for all his hard work across the year with Geoff, and many others across the different projects he delivers.
Speaking about the night, Shrewsbury Town in the Community CEO, Jamie Edwards commented “the impact and the motivation that this night has given to our staff is always fantastic. They get to see that people really do appreciate their hard-work. As well as getting to share these stories it has been a great way to say thank you to everyone who supports us and spread even more awareness of what we are about at Shrewsbury Town.”
A ‘Night to Flourish’ was a fantastic opportunity to showcase the impact Shrewsbury Town in the Community have within Shropshire, and we are delighted that the evening raised over £10,000 to go towards helping us ensure everyone in the county continues to realise their potential and achieve their goals.
We would like to thank everyone who has helped contribute to the event and made the night possible. A full list of sponsors is below.
Headline Sponsor – Shropshire Homes
Food and Drinks Sponsor – Planet Doughnut
ShrewsAbility Recognition Case Study – Shrewsbury 10k
Fundraising Recognition Case Study – R + D Tax
Heads Up Recognition Case Study – GK MOT
Volunteer Academy Recognition Case Study – Shrewsbury Colleges Group
Video Sponsor – 7Video
Printing Sponsor – WPG
Media Sponsor – Reech Media
Photo Backdrop Sponsor – Kitch Construction and Property Development
Interview Backdrop Sponsor – Cyclone Signs