Child’s Play as Fernheath receives cash boost

A BOURNEMOUTH play association is £250 better off thanks to Carbon Stoppers.

Child's play as Fernheath receives cash boost

Child’s play: John Hardwick, Manager, Fernheath Play Association, receives the Carbon Stoppers cheque from Sally Spicer, Yellow Buses’ Marketing Assistant.

Fernheath Play Association is the latest good cause to benefit from the joint Yellow Buses/Daily Echo initiative.

Paddy Williamson, who founded Fernheath in 1976 and is Chair of the voluntary management committee, said: “We’re immensely grateful to Yellow Buses and the Echo for this generous donation.”

Carbon Stoppers was jointly launched by Yellow Buses – named Shire Operator of the Year at the 2009 UK Bus Awards – and the Daily Echo in 2008.

Each week Yellow Buses holds a ‘Thank You Thursday’ when every trip taken on the day contributes to a separately administered Community Chest.

Yellow Buses has pledged a minimum donation of £50 per week to the fund with Echo readers invited to nominate worthy recipients.

To date a total of £5,320 has been presented to 22 local charities and good causes.

Fernheath Play Association in West Howe offers activities seven days a week for children aged five to 14.

They include after-school clubs, organised trips and parent and toddler groups.

It also provides one-on-one care for disabled children, allowing their families to take a much-needed break.

From March 2011, the association will be receiving two grants totalling £50,000 from Bournemouth Council but has to rely on donations and fundraising to meet the rest of its £150,000 annual running costs.

Paddy said: “The vast majority of our costs, approximately £117,000, goes on wages in order to maintain our high staff ratio.”

Apart from Fernheath Play Association, other Carbon Stopper recipients over the last two years include Bournemouth Talking Newspaper, Dorset & Somerset Air Ambulance, Cherry Tree Nursery, Life Education Wessex, Hospital Radio Bedside, Waggy Tails Rescue, Bournemouth People First, Nile 20, Rebound Gym Club, Caring Canines, Pink Champagne Dragon Boat Team, S.P.R.I.N.G, Bournemouth Food Bank, Help & Care, thehub Goes Global, 2 Close Together, PHA-UK, Bournemouth Concert Brass, Everyman, East Dorset Alzheimer’s Society and Dorset Rape Crisis Line.