We wanted to tell you about our very exciting news. A huge new Shopping Centre with a beautiful lake and nature walks, restaurants and children’s activities opened two years ago on the outskirts of Rushden (where we are based), called Rushden Lakes. It has been a great success for our small town and has created many new jobs and boosted our local economy. One of the children’s activities venues is called 360PLAY and is part of a nationwide chain of play areas for children up to the age of ten. A while ago we saw that they were advertising for a local charity to be their ‘Charity of the Year.’  Although we are a Charitable Incorporated Company (non-profit making) we thought we would still apply.  We were invited in to see the Manager and present our organisation, which went well. A few days later we received an email advising us that we had been successful and had been chosen.  We were thrilled to receive this news.

We went and visited them again and had our photo taken with their mascots Twizzle and Twirl.  Being the Charity of the Year included us putting our collecting pots at their five pay stations, they gave us 50 double entrance tickets to sell (which we did to staff and volunteers at a reduced cost) and we have free use of their venue on 25th October, from 6.30-8.30pm at their children’s indoor play area. We have sold tickets and have arranged a tombola (prize every time), a cake stall and a lucky dip. Staff and volunteers are helping on the day and have so far sold about 70 tickets. It should be a great evening and we’re really looking forward to this fun event. Around the premises there are large posters everywhere promoting us as their Charity of the Year.

We are very pleased and wanted to share this with you and to encourage others.

The Councillor’s Empowerment Fund have also given us a grant of £500 to buy new outside play, sports equipment and indoor play mats for our centre which look great. We are very grateful to our local Councillor Janet Pinnock. We’ve also had a quiz night with pizzas organised by one of our Staff and a member of the Management Committee (Denise and Rex). It was a great evening and we raised £1200 which we were thrilled to received.

Due to the above we have been able to replace one of our laptops and a new printer to support our work. We have also bought some craft activities for older children to engage with.  We are also planning to have some sets of Christmas cards designed by children and printed to sell and also an ENCCS Christmas card to send out to all who have supported us and worked with us over the past year. It is a very exciting time!

Jeanette Maddams, Director, East Northants Child Contact Services – CIC

East Northants Child Contact Service is accredited by NACCC enhanced standards to provide supported and supervised contact. They are based in Rushden, Northants and are open Mon-Fri 9am-5pm & 2 Saturdays a month www.enccs.uk

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