A charity that works with autistic youngsters will be showcased at a special Children in Need fundraiser in Wrexham on St David’s Day.
The Boots store at Eagles Meadow shopping centre will be selling cup cakes, Welsh Cakes, holding a raffle and competitions as staff pull out all the stops for Pudsey.
Also joining in will be the charity Your Space who rely on funding from Children in Need.
Boots assistant manager Lesley Challoner said: “We’ll have competitions such as guess the number of sweets in a jar and a children’s colouring competition, all with great prizes.”
“We want to raise as much as we can as we know how local charities such as Your Space, which provides activities and social clubs for children who are on the autistic spectrum, rely on Children in Need for funding and support.”
“All staff members are delighted to be able to hold this special event which we hope will raise a really good sum of money for what is a very worthwhile charity which in turn supports thousands of small local charities such as Your Space.”
Your Space spokeswoman Tama Hall was thrilled Boots at Eagles Meadow is supporting Children in Need on St David’s Day.
She said: “As a small local charity we rely on the support of Children in Need to be able to reach as many children, young people and their families from Wrexham and the surrounding area who are living with autism.
“We reach more than 150 Wrexham children, their siblings and families and we support others from as far away as Llangollen.
“However, when you consider one in every 100 children is on the autism spectrum, then I would estimate that, in Wrexham, there are as many as 500 more children who could potentially benefit from Your Space.”
She added: “Your Space runs several youth clubs for different age groups. We have a high staffing ratio to ensure we can help those that need it.
“We also have an educational interactive room and a chill-out room which are very popular. We also take children to Plas Madoc so they can tackle the climbing wall, enjoy family swimming lessons and have football coaching.
“It breaks my heart that young autistic children are forced away from football clubs as there is no one trained to work with autistic youngsters. So we try and give them that experience.”
Val and her husband Al Gilpin, of Rhos, whose two boys, Evan, six and Owen, nine, say Your Space is fantastic and a wonderful place for their children to attend.
Val said: “It really is amazing. It gives the boys the chance to socialise at their own pace and also gives us, as parents, a break and a bit of space.
“It’s important for me that I know they are safe when they go to Your Space and they are doing things they enjoy.”
According to Lorraine Ashworth, of Penley, her son, Declan, enjoys Your Space particularly going on the climbing wall at Plas Madoc.
She said: “Declan really enjoys it. The staff are all amazing. Declan’s brother, Ronan, nine, goes on the climbing wall too while our other son, Connor, three, attends the interactive story telling events they have.
“The main thing is Declan, who suffers autism, makes friends and that alone gives him much more confidence. He also enjoys the artificial fish tank they have and the bean bag room.”
Kelly McLeod-Andrews, of Wrexham, has two boys, Evan, eight, and Riley, four, who both attend Your Space.
She said: “It really is brilliant. Evan loves it there especially as he’s meeting similar children. It’s the one place he’s always happy to go.
“The social interaction helps his autism especially being with people who understand. The sensory room at Your Space is amazing and Evan absolutely adores it.”
Cain Edwards, who teaches children performing arts at Your Space, says the charity is based at Gwersyllt Resource Centre.
She said: “The money we receive from Children in Need supports so many of our activities such as sports sessions, performing arts and sessions for the siblings of children who are on the autism spectrum.
“We are so grateful to everyone, like Boots at Eagles Meadow, who fundraises for what is a fantastic charity. Without the support of Children in Need we simply couldn’t do half of what we do.”
Eagles Meadow manager Kevin Critchley said: “It’s a wonderful that the patron saint of Wales is joining forces with Pudsey to raise money for so many important organisations like Your Space.
“The fundraising events at Boots are also going to be a lot of fun so people can have a great time and raise money for charity at the same time.”
For More information about Your Space visit yourspacemarches.co.uk or Facebook facebook.com/yourspacewales or call 01978 756804
For more information about Eagles Meadow including opening times visit www.eagles-meadow.co.uk