Henley Virtual Christmas Fayre has been set up by Milly Hudson of Bella’s Bookshelf (an Independent Usborne Organiser) for Christmas shopping from 27-29 November in aid of Helen and Douglas House Children’s Hospice.
Milly hopes to raise £1,000 for the charity. She said, I wanted to set up a Virtual Christmas Fayre for three main reasons; firstly, to organise something to try to replace the physical Christmas markets and fayres that would usually be taking place at this time of year (and which lots of small, local businesses rely upon for seasonal trade) and, secondly, to create some Christmas joy at the end of what has been a very hard year for most people! I also wanted to set up the fayre to support a local charity – Helen & Douglas House Children’s Hospice – who have been heavily hit by the huge reduction in their charitable income through charity shops being shut and local fundraising evens cancelled due to Covid. Whilst these things have closed or stopped, their work still continues providing vital care and support for local, terminally ill children and their families.”
Businesses are asked to donate £10 for their ‘virtual stall’. 69 businesses have already signed up. Businesses will be able to post into the Facebook group up to three times a week in the lead up to the event and be given a dedicated slot of 20 minutes over the course of the Virtual Christmas Fayre weekend. Their ‘virtual stall’ fee will be paid into the Go Fund Me page, and all funds raised will be used to buy books, activities and games for the families supported by Helen & Douglas House in time for Christmas.
Milly will also be running a raffle as part of the weekend with 65 fantastic prizes so far donated by some of lovely, local businesses. For every £2 donated to Helen & Douglas House via the Go Fund Me page people will be given a raffle number. The raffle will be drawn live at the end of the Fayre (on the evening of Sunday 29th November) by a number generator website.
Milly added, “I also have plans to include entertainment as part of the weekend (so far including; two adult choirs, a primary school choir, dance performances and an appearance from the Henley Santa!). I will be contacting all the local schools in the next day or so to see if and how we can include them in the weekend of festivities as well. I want the group and event to have a Christmas and community feel about it and for it to be much more than just a buy and sell platform! I will also be able to top up any donations (over £600) by an additional 60% from Usborne. So, as things stand, I will be able to donate at least £1,250 worth of books, games and activities to the charity!”