Steve Vassell of Capshann Promotions has enjoyed being a DJ for 30 years. During this time he has been approached many times to provide musical entertainment for various charity fundraising events, which he enjoys thoroughly. On an annual basis, at the request of old friends, he organises a disco with a live musical band for the people of his age group to have a reunion style get together, and enjoy the music of their era, being the 80’s. A popular choice is a band called “The Jam’d” who are a tribute band from Lincoln, covering the music of Paul Weller’s original group ‘The Jam’.
Steve organised a charity fundraising evening to raise money for charity New Directions Rugby Ltd. held on November 18th 2011. He was delighted that Rugby’s Benn Hall offered their venue for the evening’s entertainment as there were over 300 guests attending on this occasion. The evening was a great success with lots of old school friends gathering together and dancing the night away. Guests from New Directions attended early in the evening, enjoying themselves and dancing to the disco. The event was such fun that even at the end of the night when the lights came on at 1am , guests were still dancing.
Steve remarked, “It’s a great feeling knowing everyone has had a fab night and raising money for a local charity at the same time. It is quite difficult organising such an event and I thoroughly appreciate how hard it must be for local charities to try and raise money on a regular basis, but having done the maths and paying up front for tickets, the venue, the band, door staff, extra DJs, most of which I must say, do this at a reduced cost and I am really grateful, it is always a risk to make the evening a success, but I am very happy that it was a very well supported event , enabling us to be in a position to donate £1000.00 to New Directions the charity of our choice this year.”
Service users at Vicarage Road have transformed their courtyard garden into a winter haven for birds this year. On November 17th 2011 a Rowan tree donated by Bernhard’s Nurseries was planted in the garden with a small celebration lunch provided by Team Leader Collette Rudnicki.
Service users chose the tree personally from one of Bernhard’s fields earlier in the year. Susie was delighted to fill the birdfeeder on the day with nuts to attract the birds. Support Worker Wendy Goddard said “We have enjoyed the garden this summer and it will be nice to encourage the birds back this winter.”
New Directions encourages its service users’ love of nature with visits to natural environments and garden centres, by supporting them within the New Direction’s own Gardening Group as part of a wide range of activities at its Day Opportunities Centre or by enjoying New Directions purpose-built Sensory Garden.
Service users in The Gardening Group grew enormous pumpkins from seed this year for a Pumpkin Competition held on 19th September 2011. The event took place at the Day Opportunities’ Halloween Fair at the church hall; together with a cake stand, bric-a brac stall and tombola.
Planning the competition took place in the spring when pumpkin seeds were sewn in pots by The Gardening Group. These pots were then put in Gateway House’s greenhouse to germinate. Once the seedlings had grown into young plants they were then planted by The Gardening Group in Gateway House garden and also in New Directions’ own allotment, surplus plants were given to staff to grow at home.
The pumpkins needed plenty of watering and regular weeding in the summer by The Gardening Group to make them a good size. At the Halloween Pumpkin Competition the pumpkins were measured by students from Rugby School. The winner of the 1st prize of a football donated by JJB Sports was Team Leader, Debbie and family. Second prize went to service user Keith.
Following the pumpkin competition service users spent time in Day Activities sessions carving the pumpkins into scary Halloween faces. The carved Halloween pumpkins were then displayed at the Halloween Disco at the Gateway Club and each of New Directions homes.