Charity Support

July 2021: Special Needs Buggy

A young resident, Caroline Hepwood, has an extremely rare genetic condition called Nicolaides Baraitser Syndrome. She has severe learning difficulties and limited speech. Her mother, Claire Hepwood, approached Wokingham Lions for a donation towards the cost of a special needs buggy for Caroline. When we looking into the request we decided that we would cover the cost in full.

Claire told us “The buggy will make such a difference, and allow me confidently to go out into the community on my own with her. Since lockdown, Caroline’s behavior has been unpredictable, and I didn’t feel safe taking her out.

Saturday 11 April 2021: Donation to Marie Curie

For several years Wokingham Lions have supported Marie Curie by helping with their Daffodil Appeal collection.  However we were unable to help this year because covid lockdown rules prevented supermarket collections.  Instead we donated the proceeds of the March quiz, totalling £360.

Fiona Turner, Berkshire’s community fundraiser, Marie Curie, said: “On behalf of all at Marie Curie, I would like to thank the Wokingham Lions, and all who took part in the recent virtual pub quiz, for raising £360. This is a wonderful amount, and we are so grateful to you for supporting us at this event. The money raised will allow us to continue to support many more people locally who are suffering from a terminal illness, through our community nursing service. Although the service is free to parents and families, it costs us £20 per hour of nursing. Thank you again for your wonderful donation and support.”

January 2021: Marshalling the Covid Vaccination

We offered to help by marshalling the car park for the first day of covid vaccinations at the Bradbury Centre.  Our assistance was appreciated by the elderly residents who attended, and we received donations of £119

Monday 26 October 2020: Quiz proceeds donated to the Ollie Young Foundation

Proceeds from the Wokingham Lions Club virtual pub quiz in September have been donated to the Ollie Young Foundation (OYF), a local charity which funds targeted paediatric brain tumour research and support. Nigel Page, president of the Lions club, presented a cheque for £320 to Sarah Simpson, founder of OYF.

Sarah said: “We are extremely grateful to the Wokingham Lions Club for their support through this extraordinary time. Their efforts and selflessness are what gives charities like ours the little boost we need. Thank you to all those who took part in the virtual quiz. Thank you to Ian for hosting yet another great evening, and to all those who donated to our charity too. We very much appreciate it.”

President Nigel Page presents a cheque for £320 to Sarah Simpson, founder of Ollie Young Foundation.

October 2020: Marshalling the Flu Vaccination

The Wokingham Medical Centre asked for our help marshalling the vaccinations by ensuring attendees maintained social distancing and arrived in the right sequence.  We took the opportunity to have a collection bucket and raised £330 over three days

Easter 2020: Wokingham Lions Giant Easter Egg Raffle

We distributed giant easter eggs to numerous pubs and restaurants in Wokingham and the surrounding area.  Each venue would have held a raffle with the egg as the prize. All the proceeds would have gone to our charity account, which is used to support local good causes.

However, due to the coronavirus all pubs and restaurants were closed over the Easter period.  Some venues had already sold tickets, and gave us the takings.  We have asked each venue to use the egg however they choose, and several donated their eggs to the children’s ward at the Royal Berks Hospital

Friday/Saturday 13/14 March 2020: Marie Curie Daffodil Collection

Every year we help Marie Curie with their daffodil collection.  Several members took shifts to cover two days at Morrisons supermarket and collected a total of £767.

Wednesday 11 March 2020: Gerry Aggett Award to Lindsay Browne

Gerry Aggett was a very active member of Wokingham Lions Club whose achievements included initiating the May Fayre. When he died the Club created the Gerry Aggett Award in his memory. It is given each year to an individual who we consider has contributed significantly to the local community, and a donation of £1,000 is given to a local charity of their choice.

This year the Club unanimously chose Lyndsay Browne as the recipient.  Lyndsay created the charity School Days, which collects used school uniforms and equipment, renovates them then distributes them to families in need.  They also buy new uniforms when necessary.  Wokingham Lions have supported School Days since its inception in 2018.  Our president, Lyn Baily, has established a particularly strong association with Lyndsay, who the Club decided was a very worthy winner of the award.  Lyndsay chose to give the donation to School Days and Homestart.

In accepting the award Lyndsay noted that School Days have so far helped over 530 children.  One recent initiative that was helped by various Lions members was refurbishing over 50 pairs of football boots that were kindly donated to them.

Lyndsay Browne accepts the Gerry Aggett award from president Lyn Baily, while Ursula Aggett looks on.

Wednesday 11 March 2020: Cheque Presentation to Citizen’s Advice

President Lyn Baily handed a cheque for £1,500 to Jake Morrison from Wokingham Citizen’s Advice.

Wednesday 13 November 2019: Cheque Presentations to WADE and the Ollie Young Foundation

John Cleary was instrumental in organising the first #Woky Comedy Night, and at our business meeting we handed over the proceeds. President Lyn Baily presented a cheque for £1000 to Jackie Wilson from WADE, who explained that they provide a day centre for the elderly, but they were finding more and more of the people they help now suffer from dementia.  She then presented a cheque for £500 to Sarah Simpson and Barbara Young from the Ollie Young Foundation.

Sarah Simpson (OYF), Barbara Young (OYF), Lyn Baily, Jackie Wilson (WADE) and John Cleary

Wednesday 11 September 2019: Donation to Sue Ryder

President Lyn Baily handed a cheque for £5,000 to Abi Hurst, community fundraiser for the Sue Ryder Wokingham Day Hospice. The funds will be used to purchase two new specialist chairs and a new IV drip to help patients with limited mobility.

In accepting the cheque Abi said “We at Sue Ryder Wokingham Day Hospice are so grateful to the Wokingham Lions Club for their generous donation. It was lovely to have them come over to the hospice, and for them to see first-hand how their donation will be used. It also helps with understanding about our services in the hospice and the local community. We rely heavily on support from groups such as the Lions, and their support and amazing donation are so very much appreciated!

Lyn responded: “Lion Patrick Allen and I visited the Sue Ryder Hospice, and it was good to see the facility and meet the wonderful staff. We are very pleased to make this donation to such a worthy cause.

Founder Lady Sue Ryder was a humanitarian dedicated to the relief of suffering. The Wokingham Day Hospice provides expert palliative care and services for people who are living with life-limiting conditions, as well as supporting their families. Services are offered in the hospice or at home. Other health professionals include occupational therapists, physiotherapists and dieticians.

Monday 10 July 2019: Donations from the May Fayre

Profits from this year’s May Fayre event were donated to two local charities, Me2 Club and Home-Start Wokingham.

Vice President Lyn Baily said: “We are very pleased to be able to support Me2 Club and Home-Start, with a cheque for £3,000 to each organisation. This money will help vulnerable families with children in the Wokingham area, and enable them to continue their valuable work.”

Tess Eagles, manager, Me2 Club, said: “The Me2 Club team is very grateful for this amazing support from the Wokingham Lions Club. The fantastic donation of £3,000 will enable six more local children with additional needs to join in with a weekly, mainstream leisure activity. With the support of their volunteer ‘buddy’ the children will grow in confidence and self-esteem, whilst having lots of fun! Families will also receive approximately 285 hours of valuable respite. We would not be able to survive without donations such as this, and we would like to say thank you for choosing us as a beneficiary of the Wokingham May Fayre.

Emma Roberts, scheme manager, Home-Start Wokingham District, said: “With the support provided by the Wokingham Lions, from the proceeds of the May Fayre, we can continue to provide our support to vulnerable families across the Wokingham Borough. This vital donation will enable us to train more volunteers, and in turn these volunteers will regularly support families with young children, helping to reducing isolation, providing encouragement and advice and a listening ear. Without this support from the May Fayre, our waiting list of families needing support would get even longer. A huge thank you to the Wokingham Lions, and by extension all those who supported the May Fayre, for your help to us in our work.”

The Wokingham Lions Club works in partnership with the Wokingham Town Council to organise the annual May Fayre. The May Fayre’s profits are made up from proceeds from the May Fayre (stall sales), sponsorship and public donations on the day. Organised by Lions Andy Slay, Ian Grange and other Lions members, this year’s annual May Fayre event took place on 6th May 2019.

Tess Eagles, Lyn Baily and Emma Roberts

Wednesday 8 May 2019: Cheque Presentations to Involve Community Services and Daisy’s Dream

Philip Cook from Involve and Ellen Ludlow from Daisy’s Dream were unable to attend the recent Presentation Evening so were invited to our next business meeting.

President Debbie Slay explained to them that we invited all our members to nominate charities to be supported from the proceeds of the May Fayre, from which we chose two.  We decided to donate £500 to each of the runners up, which included Involve and Daisy’s Dream.  Debbie and Andy Slay (who managed the May Fayre) therefore presented cheques to them.

Philip and Ellen each gave a short presentation describing their respective organisations.

Andy, Philip, Debbie and Ellen

Wednesday 3 April 2019: Buffet & Wine Presentation Evening

We invited representatives from the charities we chose to support from some of our fund-raising events to this special event in Wokingham Town Hall.  Our president Debbie Slay, assisted by various members of our Fund-Raising Committee, handed over cheques totalling £6,500. Donations and assistants were as follows:

Winter Carnival Festive Dash (Bob Westerman):

May Fayre 2019 Nominees (Ian Grange):

We asked all our members to propose charities they would like to be supported from the proceeds of this year’s May Fayre, and chose two ‘winners’ from the suggestions.  We then decided that all nominees should receive £500 each from our charity account, and presented cheques to the following:

May Fayre 2019 Beneficiaries (Ian Grange):

The ‘winners’ of our internal vote will each receive half of the proceeds of the forthcoming May Fayre:

Wokingham Fireworks 2018 (Lyn Baily):

We are one of the consortium of five service clubs that run the fireworks, so we share the proceeds, which we donate to a nominated charity:

Gerry Aggett Award (Patrick Allen)

One of our members, Gerry Aggett, started the annual May Fayre.  He unfortunately died several years ago, and we decided to create an award in his name to be given to a local individual who makes an exceptional contribution to local good causes, which the recipient will in turn pass to a charity of their choice.  This year we nominated Chris Pape, who has worked for many years to support individuals in need:

£500 Donation to MacMillan Cancer Support
£500 Donation to Berkshire MS Therapy Centre
£500 Donation to Headway Thames Valley
£500 Donation to WADE
£500 Donation to Younger People with Dementia
May Fayre 2019 Beneficiary - Home-Start
May Fayre 2019 Beneficiary - Me2 Club
£2000 Donation from Wokingham Fireworks to School Days
£1000 Gerry Aggett Award to Chris Pape

October 2018: Berkshire Women’s Aid

To help support victims of domestic abuse, the Wokingham Lions Club donated £1,000 to Berkshire Women’s Aid (BWA).

Liz Terry, Chief Executive, Berkshire Women’s Aid, said: “Thank you for your generosity. This money is really timely and very welcome. BWA are soon to take possession of a new building, and this donation will be used to provide furniture. We offer a safe haven for victims of domestic abuse and violence.

Debbie Slay, president, Wokingham Lions Club, said: “We are pleased to support this important organisation, which was founded 40 years ago. We raised £480 at our Tea Tent at the Rock Choir Festival (Cantley Field) on the August Bank Holiday Monday. Our club matched the amount raised from our charity funds, and rounded it up to £1,000 for Berkshire Women’s Aid.

Berkshire Women’s Aid works throughout Bracknell, Reading and Wokingham. For more information, please visit the website, The Helpline phone number is 0118 950 4003.

Liz Terry, Chief Executive, Berkshire Women’s Aid (third from left), accepts a cheque from Debbie Slay, President, Wokingham Lions Club. Members of the Lions Club who helped raise money for this donation at the Tea Tent in August are (from left) Marie Oxbrough, Sue Jackson, Tim Hanton and Mervyn Clark

August 2018: May Fayre Donations

Profits from this year’s May Fayre event were donated to two local charities by the Wokingham Lions Club at the 8th August business meeting. The beneficiaries are Thames Valley Air Ambulance and Alexander Devine Children’s Hospice Service.

Debbie Slay, president, Wokingham Lions Club, said: “We are once again pleased to be able to support two worthy charities, with a cheque for £3,000 to each organisation. We hope that this money will enable them to carry on their important work. In addition, we are pleased to welcome Wokingham Town Mayor Cllr Julian McGhee-Sumner as an honorary member of the club.

Claire Redrup, Community Fundraising Manager, Thames Valley Air Ambulance, said: “We rely on the generosity of the communities we serve. We are not government funded and receive no National Lottery funding. Donations from the community are what keep our vital service operational. The generous funds from supporters such as the Wokingham Lions Club help us to deliver advanced care to people when the worst happens. We are now operational 19 hours a day, 365 days a year, attending more emergencies than ever.”

Claire Coldicott, Director of Fundraising and Communications at Alexander Devine Children’s Hospice Service said: “We are delighted to receive a donation of £3,000 from the Wokingham Lions Club. This money will go towards running our day care services that opened in June this year, in our new state of the art hospice building just outside Maidenhead, to support families who have a child with a life threatening or life limiting condition. Children will be able to enjoy play sessions in our fully-equipped sensory room, as well as making a mess in the creative learning zone and music in our dedicated all-age music space. We can’t thank Wokingham Lions enough for their support at such an exciting time in our development.

The Wokingham Lions Club works in partnership with the Wokingham Town Council to organise the annual May Fayre. The May Fayre’s profits are made up from proceeds from the May Fayre (stall sales), sponsorship and public donations on the day.

From left: Debbie Slay, President, Wokingham Lions Club; Angus Ross, volunteer, Thames Valley Air Ambulance; Anita Weare, volunteer, Alexander Devine Children’s Hospice Service; and Wokingham Town Mayor Cllr Julian McGhee-Sumner.

12 July 2017: May Fayre Donations

Profits from this year’s May Fayre event were donated to three local charities, DrugFAM, Building for the Future and Berkshire Women’s Aid.

We are once again delighted to be able to support three worthy charities, with a cheque for £3,000 to each recipient. We hope that this money will enable them to carry on their amazing work. In addition, we are pleased to welcome Wokingham Town Mayor Cllr Peter Lucey as an honorary member of the club,” said Sue Jackson, president, Wokingham Lions Club.

Elizabeth Burton-Phillips MBE, Founder and Director, DrugFAM, said: “The generous donation from the Wokingham Lions Club will, without question, strengthen my resolve and determination to continue to do all I can to support families in Wokingham impacted by this disease and to bring about positive change for the stigma of addiction so that they are understood, supported and not left in isolation.” DrugFAM’s helpline is 0300 800 3853 and operates seven days a week from 9am-9pm. Family Support Group meetings are held every Monday evening at The Renewal Centre, Swallowfield, from 7.30-9pm. Website is

Jane Holmes, CEO, Building for the Future, said: “Building for the Future is the largest charity supporting disabled children in Wokingham Borough. It was set up in 2007 by a group of parents of disabled children who were desperate for somewhere for their children to play.  After years of hard work, Our House was opened in 2014 by the Earl and Countess of Wessex. This was achieved by the determination of parents, alongside caring for their disabled children. Today, the facility has over five hundred families on its database with numbers growing all the time. Offering soft play, a computer area, play areas, a teenage zone, sensory room and a fully accessible bathroom, as well as parents’ facilities, Our House is the only centre of its kind for miles around. Our House continues to be run by parents of disabled children who work as volunteers. It receives no grants from local service providers; all of its running expenses come from fundraising efforts.” Website is

Liz Terry, Chief Executive, Berkshire Women’s Aid, said: “BWA received over 6,000 calls to its helpline in the last year. This is a vital service, especially the Out of Hours service. Victims of domestic abuse and violence can speak to someone at any time, and access the wide range of services that BWA provides. This service costs £600 a month to provide, and BWA is very grateful to the Wokingham Lions Club for their generous donation.” Berkshire Women’s Aid provides confidential support, information, outreach services and refuge accommodation for women and their children, as well as men, who are affected by domestic abuse and violence. All women, children and men should be able to live free from the fear and experience of domestic abuse and violence in their homes and relationships. Website is

The club works in partnership with the Wokingham Town Council to organise the event. The May Fayre’s profits are made up from proceeds from the May Fayre (stall sales), sponsorship and public donations on the day.

From left to right: Andy Slay (Mayre Fayre chairman), Jane Homes (CEO, Building for the Future), Liz Terry (Chief Executive, Berkshire Women’s Aid), Bob Westerman (Lions president 2016/17), Sue Jackson (Lions president 2017/18) and Elizabeth Burton-Phillips MBE (Founder and Director, DrugFAM)