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Charity in call for trustees to build on year of success

Charity in call for trustees to build on year of success

Special Stars Foundation treasurer Colette Watson (centre, left) and chair Natalie Barnes (centre, right) with their award. Picture by Kevin Greene.

A CHARITY which has made 2017 a year to remember is appealing for business people to join its board of trustees and help to build on the successes in the future.

Special Stars Foundation will this month celebrate the first anniversary of its move to new premises in Hull city centre, a milestone which was followed by securing £200,000 from the Big Lottery Fund.

Now the charity, which works to improve the physical and emotional health and wellbeing of families across the region affected by disability, has won a major regional business award, and the hope is the heightened profile will attract more support.

Natalie Barnes, founder of the charity and Chair of the trustees, said: “The 12 months since we moved into our building in High Street have been amazing. The hard work of the volunteers, staff and trustees has been rewarded and we hope that by demonstrating our capabilities we will encourage more people to come and help us.”

The money from the Big Lottery Fund will help the Foundation provide specialist support services from its headquarters. Other revenue comes from the Foundation’s status as a beneficiary of the Dove House Hospice charity lottery and from fund-raising activities such as the Christmas Fayre, which will take place on Thursday 30 November from 7pm until 9pm at its centre at 171 High Street, Hull.

The Foundation’s entrepreneurial approach to raising funds and awareness has now brought further recognition in the Chamber Bridlington and Yorkshire Coast Business Awards, with success in the social enterprise category ahead of CASE Training Services and Hull Children’s University, two well-established heavyweights of the regional charity scene.

The Foundation was set up in 2014, and the awards judges examined its work to reduce social isolation by offering support, training and advice services for parent carers. They reported: “This category had high standard finalists and the result was very close. Special Stars’ edge was their holistic approach involving child, carers, siblings and family. Also noted was their trustees personally experiencing the issues and supplying a solution for the lack of provision for young children.”

Natalie said: “We were up against two very well-known charities and the fact that they were both highly commended shows how tough the competition was. The reaction from our members has been fantastic and we now want to use the award to raise our profile further.

“We are all working flat out to raise money for the Foundation and to provide the services which make such a difference to people living with disabilities, and we will be able to do that more effectively if we can bring in more trustees.

“The role is not particularly time-consuming because we already have professional advisers, but it would be good to have more strategic business input at the trustee meetings and more help running our campaigns.

“The benefits for the trustees include raising their own profile, developing their own skills and experience and gaining the satisfaction of having made a difference in the community.”

For further details and to discuss how your business can get involved with the charity visit the website or contact 01482 227657 or


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