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A year’s worth of fundraising and awareness support from Sainsbury’s Kidderminster has made a huge difference to the volunteers at Severn Area Rescue Association (SARA). Thanks to generous donations from customers and colleagues, the store has announced they have raised £13,968.12 in total. On Thursday 19th June colleagues from the store met up with the charity members at their Wyre Forest base to celebrate the successful partnership.
It’s been an amazing 12 months for the charity after they entered Sainsbury’s Kidderminster Local Charity voting process back in May 2012. For the last five years, the retailer gives customers nationwide the chance to vote for their favourite Local Charity, to be considered to receive a year’s worth of support from their nearby Sainsbury’s store.
Throughout the last 12 months, colleagues and SARA volunteers held several activities to raise funds and awareness of the charity’s cause. These included quiz nights, rowing the length of the River Severn in the stores foyer, an ongoing book sale, bag packs with the Mayor of Kidderminster, a bingo evening and much more.
Paul Watkins, Area commander for SARA North and station chairman for Wyre Forest, added:
“Working with the staff at Sainsburys Kidderminster has been nothing short of phenomenal. We are so proud of the support from the staff and their enthusiasm for fundraising for SARA has been incredible. We have done some amazing events; including rowing the length of the River Severn and climbing the equivalent height of the three peaks. Raising nearly £14K is amazing and will ensure we can continue to provide our life saving services to the communities. Thank you to Sam, Helen and all the staff and customers and Sainsbury’s Kidderminster, and my volunteer crew for their support”.
Despite the partnership coming to a close, it doesn’t mean that the charity will now be forgotten. Staff have built an exceptional relationship with volunteers over the past year, and look forward to working with them in the future.
PR Ambassadors Samantha Buckley and Helen Bower added:
“It has been a pleasure working with Steve, Paul and all the volunteer crew at SARA. The amount that we have raised this year has shocked everyone and we are thrilled that it is going to such a good local cause”.
What a fantastic day we had along the Riverbank in Chepstow for our annual Duck Race. We would like to say a HUGE thank you to everyone who came and saw us on our stands and bought race tickets and/or merchandise. We are extremely grateful for the fantastic support we receive from our local community which has made this year’s race the most successful to date. THANK YOU!
The Great SARA Duck Race winning numbers for 2014 are:
Thank you to everyone that brought a ticket and came to Chepstow river front to cheer the ducks on.
When SARA opened its third station in 2001, Alan became an active crew member. In 2002 Alan took up the roll as Executive Chairman and within a year his wife joined him as Executive Secretary, together they became the anchor of SARA keeping it balanced.In 2005 SARA was asked to provide their skills and services further north up the River Severn, Alan was the lead person that founded SARA’s Wyre Forest station. With four SARA Stations Alan and Andrea leading SARA as a formidable team.
Sadly in 2009 Andrea died suddenly, leaving a very big hole not just within SARA but also in Alan’s life. Alan found the strength to carry on his SARA duties as Executive Chair, Coxswain, crew as well as being a dad to their two boys. After four years he felt it was time for a change, but found it hard to walk away so another year passed. At this year’s SARA AGM after 12 years as Executive Chairman he stood down. Alan who has been involved in SARA now for 21 years will still be involved, almost going back to where he began.
So a new chapter begins within SARA with Chris Crowley being voted in as Executive Chairman.
SARA have for several years been supporting a local village, Devauden with provision of First Aid and Mountain Rescue services for their Cross Country races, Music Festival, Fireworks Spectacular and Fetes and are very honoured to have been chosen as Devauden’s Charity of the Year 2014/2015.
Janine Lyford, SARA Beachley’s Land Search Manager said “The Devauden events are an absolute pleasure to work at, as a rescue organisation we exist to save lives and support our local community and the returning support from the community is so much appreciated, without it we would not be able to provide these services and save lives.”
John Brooks, Race organiser of Devauden’s Races, said “It is tremendously reassuring to have SARA on duty during our races around Chepstow Park Woods. Thankfully so far they have only had to deal with minor incidents but we know they are ready to respond quickly and with tremendous expertise if called upon. I am delighted they support us and we are equally delighted to support the fantastic job they do covering the River Wye and Severn Estuary.
John Rowlands, Chairman of the Hood Memorial Hall Committee, added “Devauden’s Charity of the Year was chosen in a vote by the people of the village. We are delighted that they overwhelmingly decided that SARA were the most worthy cause and we look forward to making a further donation next year”
Further information about SARA can be found at www.sara-rescue.org.uk or ‘like’ us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter @SARAbeachley
Further information about Devauden Village can be found at www.devauden.org.uk or like us on Facebook