Hay Festival is always one of our busiest times as it gives us a great opportunity to share what we do and to raise money. This year was no exception.
On Saturday 27th May we started with a refreshment stall with our friends at Hay Fair trade who are always supportive and give us the opportunity to raise some money by doing refreshments as well as discussing issues with visitors about people seeking sanctuary and telling them what we do . We made some new signs and used our updated leaflets.
We also had a stall on the Brecon Road for the 27, 28th 29th thanks to the kindness of Richard who let us use his front garden again to share information, give away our ‘sanctuary seeking’ toys [ thanks to Lis ‘ friend who has given us so many beautiful toys that were collected by her family.] These toys allow us to open a conversation with children about why people/toys might have to leave home and need looking after. Not one child suggested that the toys should go home , be put on a barge or be sent to Rwanda. One young man seized upon a small Winnie the Pooh , couldn’t quite understand how Winnie had been in Syria and fled because of the war[ until we explained] but was keen to have it so he could give it to his sister. When the man was born, his sister had insisted he be given a Winnie the Pooh like her and now she is due to have a baby herself. So Winnie has gone to a good home and some money was given that will allow us to continue welcome days, provide shoes, help with hardship, provide some overnight stays to people rendered homeless or assist with legal cases.
And we held buckets after a number of events on the festival site. Thanks to the Hay Festival management and especially to Penny the Box Office manager for continuing support. Also thanks to the stewards and security staff for tolerance and support.
In total we raised over £4000 but we also raised awareness and validated many people’s feelings. So many people thanked us for being there and shared what they too were doing in their own areas.
Grateful thanks to Richard Warr, Penny Compton, Hay Fair trade, People who made cakes and biscuits, Claire and Chris Armstrong, Lis Lifford, Christina Campbell, Sue Richards, Trevor Lee, Clare Owen, Clair Swales, Mark and Janet Robinson, Tim Butler, Val Fraser, Margaret and Pat Blake, Selina Fox, Conal Dunn, Val Thatcher, Rhiannon Davies, Jean Ruston, Hilary Bright, Janet Bodily, Ange Grunsell, Ruth Brown, Neil Jones, Sean O’Donoghue, Rowland Jepson, Julie, Jude Chegwidden, Virginia Brown, Philip and Lynne Oliver and all who gave us money and help!