One Month to our Easter Event

Fundraising for animal charities UK

Poster aka Kattaddorra

At Barbara’s place of work we are hosting an Easter Coffee Morning on Maundy Thursday, to raise funds for food for our local animal Sanctuaries:

  • Wear Valley & Darlington Cats Protection,
  • Kays Hill Cattery, Ark on the Edge Cattery
  • and Stray Aid (which is a charity for dogs, but if they are given cat food they always pass it on to us for our cat charities)

Four weeks to go:

We have our preparations underway. Running alongside this, Babz is also organising a decorated or painted or dyed egg completion with prizes for children and adults, which will be judged that day by a local celebrity Sharon Griffiths author and long time journalist.
We hope this will attract more people to come along and help us to raise lots of money to help all the needy animals in care right now.

As all the Sanctuaries are overflowing we thought it only fair to share the proceeds rather than just one benefit.

So we have started shopping for Easter stuff, allsorts can be found in our wonderful £ shops here. For our contribution we bought some little yellow chicks, some pretty artificial eggs, a pack of Easter banners for the window and a pretty tablecloth for the food table.

Barbara’s firm allows her to spend so much from her petty cash on the ingredients for the scones and cakes and for prizes for the competition.

We already have some nice prizes for the raffle, which kind people have given us since the last event we held. She has sent out the press releases and designed posters and we have put them around our town. I have designed the invitations.

Three weeks to go:

We will be sorting out the prizes and deciding in what order to put them on the list, then packing them into a box to transport to her office nearer the day.

Two weeks to go:

I will be designing the menu and the tickets for the raffle prizes, I think I might do Easter chick and/or Easter bunny shapes.

Two days to go:

Babz will be baking her ever popular cheese scones and chocolate cakes and a lemon cake for those who don’t like chocolate. It’s always a quandry how many to make, we’ve no idea how many people will come, so, too few we run out, too many some get left. Although we do raise money from the shops and businesses in the street too who come for takeaways.

One day to go:

  • Morning: we will be rearranging the furniture in her events room and ticketing and setting out the raffle prizes, getting out the cups, saucers, plates, spoons, knives, serviettes etc. we will use on the day.
  • Evening: Babz will be icing the cakes and later we will pack everything in boxes ready for an early start in the morning.


We will be up very early so Walt and Jo can have their time outside and hopefully will then come in and settle.

One Coffee Morning day Jozef went awol and Babz had to set off alone, by the time I got there she was frantically busy and very happy to see me. We have some friends who usually kindly help us because Babz has her job to do as well as being hostess.

I’m to and fro with fresh pots of tea and coffee and serving cake. Oh dear one old lady is never happy ‘My tea is too hot’ ‘My tea is too cold’ ‘My tea is too weak’ etc…. lol and we have some quite eccentric local characters come, some with no money poor souls, there is always a cup of tea and biscuits free for them.

So, Bryan helps wash up and Pearl and Aileen sell the raffle tickets for us and fill in the names on the back, sometimes it gets so chaotic it’s a free for all with people helping, but great fun!

When everyone has gone Babz has a mountain of paper work with lists of the prize winners and phoning the winners who weren’t there for the result.

I start cleaning up, always wall to wall crumbs lol then we deliver the raffle prizes to the winners who didn’t stay, then thankfully we can come home to our boyz and put our feet up for an hour.

I wish our PoC family could be with us that day but we will take some pictures to share and tell you all about it.

Ruth aka Kattaddorra

Facebook Comments


One Month to our Easter Event — 111 Comments

  1. I don’t know how you find the time to do this and do it so well. You do an amazing job fundraising for animal charities. I have a lot of admiration for you both in doing it. Your article gives a very nice insight into how to go about preparing for a fund raising event and I can see that a lot of work goes into it. I hope that our international visitors find the article interesting because it does provide an interesting snapshot of life in the North of England. Thanks for the article Ruth.

    • Thanks Michael yes it’s hard work but fun even though most people wonder how it could be so happy and relaxed in a funeral home. No funerals that day!
      I hoped too that our PoC family abroad might enjoy reading about the lead up to the day, then the day itself.

  2. It’s going to be fun, fun, fun but a bit of hard work as well. It’s advertised on Facebook, in the local press, on the local radio, on posters in the town and in the window at work, I’m a bit paranoid in case there aren’t many entries in the egg competition, especially having managed a local “celeb” to choose the winners. But I heard this afternoon that Dylan the fundraising cat’s mum is hoping to come as she is a volunteer with the Ark on the Edge who will receive a share of the proceeds of the coffee morning, so we’re hoping with fingers crossed that she might even bring Dylan, which would be spectacular, though of course he might not wish to attend a coffee morning in a funeral home. It’s a while since we did a fundraiser at my workplace so I hope my cake and scone making skills wake up again, but also another A on the E volunteer is making some cakes as well and Aileen,the raffle ticket lady might offer to make us some pies as she usually does. At this stage it’s all a bit chaotic and tomorrow we have to go and look for prizes for the different age categories of the egg competition and as it’s staff double discount weekend at the Co-op we’re hoping to get some bargain eggs. We might also be having some residents from the nearby Leonard Cheshire home, one of the ladies who works there has said she will try to get some of the residents to do eggs for the competition and try to bring some of them to the coffee morning, it’s not a large room so it might end up packed to the seams! Hopefully it’ll all come together, on the day.

    • I’m sure we’ll get lots of eggs in the comp, look at how many Easter bonnets we got two Easters ago lol At least we won’t have to go around wearing an egg like we did our bonnets lol
      It’s always stressful but you are a fantastic organiser and it always comes together on THE day x

        • We did Dee and we raised a good amount of money that day too for Kays Hill as a lot of people came to see the bonnets judged, just hoping we can do as well with eggs.
          We made a bonnet each to display to encourage others to enter the comp, guess who will be hard boiling eggs to paint soon …lol…we don’t enter our efforts of course

  3. You guys really rock!

    It’s so hard to believe that Babz’s workplace would allow this event.
    That would never happen here unless it was an animal oriented business.

    That prep is a whole lot of work. But, it’s so worthwhile.

    I had no idea what a “tombola” was and am not familiar with Sharon Griffiths, but I googled and now I know.

    Have loads of fun. Wish I was there.

    • The Co-op firm Babz works for is very ethical and concerned about animal welfare, also they encourage community events for both animals and people. We used to manage three Coffee Mornings a year but as her job is always so busy and we are both feeling our age, we haven’t had one for a while.
      Luckily Babz gets to choose the charity she does it for and we thought it would have to be a peoples one this time, but her lovely area manager agreed that animals need help more right now.
      A tombola is 5 tickets for £1, the lucky ones have a 5 or a 0 on the end and win a prize, it’s very popular and we have lots of little bunny rabbits for the 5s and toiletries we’ve been given for the 0s.
      I wish you could come Dee…mind you’d probably get a job when it got busy 😉

    • The Co-operative Group are excellent, and in particular my manager and regional manager, they help and encourage but leave me to do my own thing, couldn’t be better really.

  4. aww wish i could come 🙁 Hope things go well for it all. You’ve all put so much effort into it. Cant believe its almost Easter already.

  5. We have a lovely huge fluffy bunny we can use as first prize for our raffle, with a chocolate egg for under 18 winner or a bottle of wine for over 18 winner.
    A big pink bunny and a blue bunny, 15 little bunnies for tombola prizes and 4 chocolate bunnies for the children categories of the painted/decorated egg.
    We are making progress 🙂

      • I’ll treat you to a strip of raffle tickets Michael and post you your prize if you win lol you might win the big bunny, he is so gorgeous and soft.
        The pink and blue ones need grooming before the day lol

      • lol yes Dee he needs a beauty treatment and a new necktie before THE day but it’s too soon to do it yet as he might go in his burrow and mess himself up again 😉

      • The bunnies look better without any ribbons, I’m going to give them a good grooming tomorrow then post a photo so you can see how beautiful they come.
        Our house is chaos now with stuff to sort, had more prizes given today for the raffle ….so much to do yet.

          • Poor bodies aren’t so young though 🙁
            Babz is so stressed she says the next one we do will be for her retirement in 5 years lol
            It’s always in the lead up to events and we say ‘never again’ then when it goes well we start planning the next one because animal shelters always need money.
            How is your vaccinating going Dee, are you finished yet?

            • I’m on a little break right now to let all cool off. Had 3 back-to-back trapping failure last week, so it’s time step back.
              All really going pretty well with only about 20-22 to go. Been doing a M-W-F thing with 2( sometimes 3) each day.
              Will resume Friday. My daughter is coming for a few days next week to hold down the fort here, so I can go full force trapping daily Monday through Saturday. The vet clinic staff are being real sports with that.

              • I would think word has spread amongst the cats, a sort of universal knowledge which makes them even more wary than ferals already are.
                I’m glad your daughter is coming to help you out, it must be not only exhausting but very stressful too having to trap so many cats.
                Take care xx

            • I know! What has happened to this body in just a year?
              I feel like my back is breaking and my legs may just fall off.
              I guess the mind, heart, and spirit just keep us going.
              To us, it’s like a job that demands perfect attendance.

              • Spot on Dee! The mind, heart and spirit keep us going when our poor aging bodies scream to rest a while. I admire you very much x

              • lol Dee ‘a ball of fire’ Oh I’d love to meet you!
                Your words reminded me of when I passed the 11+ and heard I’d qualified for Grammar School, as our late mam read the letter out I shouted ‘Great balls of fire’ and ran down the village in my nightie to tell my old headmistress, I never lived that down lol

            • Beautiful. What a difference.
              I would hate to see any dressed up; but I would be OK with small ribbon bowties for the boys and small ribbon corsages for the girls.

              • Thanks Dee, they will need a final brush on THE day and maybe we can get them some bow ties and ribbon corsages for then lol

    Drum roll……………. ladies and gentleman I have great pleasure in announcing that Dylan the celebrity puss and his mum Chris Percival will be attending the coffee morning!!
    Yes, really!! We’re so excited, and just wish all the POC’ers could come as well to meet him. I just wonder if they could build an extension onto my branch before April 17th as it’s going to be standing room only!

  7. Fantastic work by two fantastic ladies x you both really have a heart of gold and your dedication to animals shows. I for one can not wait to see you all on the day and can I thank you both from the bottom of my heart for your continued support to Ark on the Edge 🙂 x x

    • Thanks Sue, looking forward to seeing you too, don’t forget to decorate some eggs to bring 😉
      You and your Rebekah and Bethany are wonderful ambassadors for the Ark on the Edge, hard working volunteers helping Pat, you are worth your weight in gold.

  8. Can I just say what hard working ladies Barbara & Ruth are x these ladies are so dedicated and organised in all that they do especially for Ark on the Edge xx a very big thank you ladies xx

    • Thank you Sue, practise never makes perfect though lol it could be chaos on the day 😉
      One time we waited and waited and no one came for the first hour, then all hell broke loose as people poured in demanding tea and coffee and cake, you never can tell how it will go.

  9. I just LOVE that Easter Event poster. All those wonderful bunnies. Too adorable for words.

    Your energy is simply amazing.! Can’t wait for more photos and mews about the event!

  10. This lovely prize for the best family joint egg entry has just been donated…we hope some families enter the comp, but if not it will make another raffle prize

  11. 3 weeks to go ……No entries for the painted egg comp so far, we will have to get doing some to encourage people, wish our PoC family lived near!

  12. It’s very difficult to get a good photo with the light shining on the window and the blue woodwork in the way, I’ll get Ruth aka on to it, she’s the paparazzi of the family.

  13. The bunnies are all groomed now and looking very nice, two for raffle prizes, two for star prizes on the tombola

  14. Going well, already we have some money in for pet food and Easter eggs are coming in thick and fast for the disadvantaged children and young disabled and hopefully enough too for old people in local care homes.
    This is Babz last Easter, it looks like we will do even better this year 🙂
    we get to take them around next week, looking forward to that

  15. This Easter’s chocolate egg collection is WONDERFUL and we look forward to distributing them on Monday

      • Well that’s nice, it’s a long time since I was called cute! :-)we have had 65 eggs and 3 chocolate bunnies donated so we’ve beat last years total by one, so many generous people have helped us again. Tomorrow Ruth and I are going to 2 residential homes and a day care centre in our town to deliver the eggs and I still have a few left over to help out other branches who’s community haven’t been as generous.

  16. Lots to do yet, tombola to sort, menu to design, then all to set up,but we already have £32 start in our funds even before the day from donations and raffle tickets so going to be a good one this time 🙂
    Will write about it with pics after it’s all over
    Thankfully there are no funerals this week.

      • Only once we had a funeral amidst the Coffee Morning, Babz can shut the back part of her building off where the Chapels of Rest are and the hearses come to the yard door of course so no one sees. Everyone was very quiet and respectful while the funeral directors were doing their job. I think it’s wonderful that the people of our town have got to know and love Babz and can feel comfy in her workplace and so when a sad day comes they know she will be there to look after their loved one and their bereaved ones too.

      • Thanks Michael. I’ve a feeling this will be our best yet 🙂
        We are organising a quiet spot for Dylan for when he needs a break and are buying him a catnip mouse for his reward.
        He’s having a busy time, he was fund raising yesterday too, he says:
        ‘It’s not often a cat gets to have his pic taken with a squirrel!
        Newton Aycliffe, fab morning. Now looking forward to Thursday in Shildon’

      • Disaster no special catnip mice to be had, apparently Viv who makes them gets her special catnip from North America and they had none! What can we reward Dylan with? He’s on a diet so can’t have treats.

        • North American catnip?
          What? We have the best in the world?
          Get some regular nip and spoon it into a small stuffed animal, stitch it up, done.
          You can do the same with one of those christmas jingle bells (do you know what I mean?) and stitch it up good.
          This sounds like so much fun!

          • We always have made our own and for local cats in care too until we came across Viv’s mice, she says it’s THE best catnip and expensive too and cats do absolutely love her mice. I wish we had time to sew lol setting in now as it sounds like there are hundreds coming including a good few disabled and mentally disabled who have painted eggs for the comp ..aaghhh.. three ‘clients’ due to arrive to fill the Chapels of Rest, we only have a small room for the event, we need an extension.
            I woke up in the night with the horrors thinking about the flowers we ordered for our celeb judge (Babz firm is paying) we’ll have to make sure the florist doesn’t put any lilies in, with Dylan being around! Luckily it’s only next door to Babz place because today is going to be soooooo busy. Tomorrow even busier ….fetch me a large G and T tomorrow evening when it’s over PLEASE

  17. One of the rescues that will benefit from the coffee morning is Stray Aid which is a dog rescue, not in our town but nearby, there really aren’t that many dog local rescues, they used to rescue cats but now only take dogs but people still donate cat food to them so they bring it to me, which is why we thought it fair to include them in the coffee morning. Well, yesterday one of the chaps that works there came and brought a huge amount of cat food, 3 big bags of biscuits, 2 big bags of litter and about 4 dozen big tins and he has more to bring on Monday so I hope we can repay their kindness with a pile of dog food for them after the day. Biscuits are ideal for feral feeding as Marion leaves a biscuit tin full out all the time as well as feeding wet food each day.

      • Marion’s hubby is collecting all that today as it’s in a Chapel and that is needed now, they’ve lots of ferals to feed, we’ll make it up to the other Rescues so they all get an equal share.
        Yes we are lucky to have so much support 🙂 🙂

      • Dee I can’t begin to explain how generous people in and around our town are, we have our share of low life but OMG we have so many kind people, no matter what the cause they will, give, give and give again. You should see the heap of cat food we already have, plus getting on for 6,000 pairs of specs donated for recycling to developing countries where a pair of specs can change someone’s life for the better, 66 Easter eggs donated this year, near enough the same last year, loads of items donated last Christmas for our appeal in co with the Salvation Army for deprived families, you name it people have or will give it. And this is just the appeals we are connected with, there is always some fundraising going on locally and people are straight there to help. I know some of my colleagues who run branches in other towns have had no eggs donated, some don’t bother with community events because there is no sense of community in their towns, so yes we are extremely lucky to have so much support locally.

    • Super!
      Your menu seems pretty reasonable to me, but I haven’t done any conversions either.
      I don’t know what a “p” means in 50p; and, I don’t really know what you mean by a biscuit.
      But, it all sounds so fantastic.
      I’m getting excited!

        • Biscuits are thin crisp and baked do you call them cookies I wonder? I was baking yesterday afternoon, haven’t baked for about a year so had forgotten my recipes and had to look them up. Made 3 chocolate sandwich cakes but dropped one just out of the oven and it crumbled to bits so had to start again, also made a lemon cake then called it a day, today I’ll make some cheeses scones and sandwich the cakes together with buttercream icing and ice them with chocolate icing. A friend is baking a couple of cakes for us as well so we should be well provided for.

  18. Almost ready, furniture to shift around tomorrow, it’s a smallish room and we need a quiet retreat for Dylan. Where to put the numerous painted and decorated eggs for the comp? aaaghhhhhhhhhhhh
    Babz is baking today, icing after work tomorrow,we need to go up very early on THE DAY ….her worst nightmare is because it’s sunny weather our boyz won’t come in until later, Jozef especially likes to go off a’hunting, she will have to go and open her office of course but I’ll have to wait until they do come in….
    The good news is we already have donations coming in, this is going to be a really GOOD one 🙂 🙂

  19. We must take some photos of the entries into the egg comp, a chap with learning disabilities has done Edward Scissorhands and Wayne Rooney and they are so good you would think you were looking at the men themselves!!! I can’t see how he can fail to win, but maybe our judge will not agree, there are a lot to choose from.

  20. so impressed with the posters so hope it goes well. i so wish i lived near uk. or somewhere half way. i feel so gutted being at the bottom of the earth. but thankfully the internet makes it easier. Ill make some scrapbook pages of the photos as then i can feel i’ve contributed. It gives me a purpose. hope it goes really well.

  21. Got lots done today, almost ready…… I have PoC withdrawal symptoms with not having much time to visit here , but back soon with article about it and lots of pics 🙂

    • Your Easter Event is going to be a blockbuster 😉 I hope the weather holds up for you. The weather down here has been wonderful for the last few days or so. Perfect conditions for an Easter event. The very best of luck but I know it will go well because you’ve made some wonderful preparations for it.

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