Monday June 3 2019

From scarers, carers to - who you'e gonna call for national carers week?

It's all happening for National Carers Week (June 10-16) in Blackpool thanks to friends and supporters of Blackpool Carers Centre. Here's what's on, when and how YOU can help. Or yelp...

From scarers, carers to - who you'e gonna call for national carers week?

Event Details:

OK, let's this straight - right from the start. This is not just (think of that M&S advert...) one event for Blackpool Carers Centre it's a whole load of events hence the start date and very l-o-n-g end date quoted. (And the whole lot of hassle trying to get this layout to work.) 

What's more they're all very special events indeed,  a veritable grab bag of goodies. But the good news is you're not going on a ghost tour which starts on Friday night and ends on September 30. Not unless they catch you and make you go BUMP! over three months of nights.  And they'll have to get past Stephen Mercer first. He's a former carer himself so he'll look out for you!

 Much of it is down to the fact that the theme of this year's National Carers Week is Getting Carers Connected - and we couldn't had a more switched on charity when it comes to networking and making connections ... their Young Carers Champion Shannon Flynn, 23, is currently working on a Young Carers App, for example. 

She recently addressed 100 freemasons too, her debut as a public speaker, putting her "confident hat on" as Shannon, 23, puts it, after wanting to "do a runner" backstage. 

And the charity got £845!

"I couldn't stop smiling," she admits. "I'm still smiling now."

Keen to do more, Shannon, who cares for her dad, is actively supporting many of the events organised not only for carers' week which officially starts on Monday June10 but the resort charity's own Cash Quest for Carers which runs right through to the end of September. 

Meantime, others are doing their own thing for the charity too - including for that Tower to Tower Blackpool-Paris September challenge already featured by Entirely North West. 

But here are the some of the headline events organised for National Carers Week and beyond.

Fri June 7 – a creepy curtain raiser ahead of Carers Week (June 10-16) as the Victorian Ghost Hunter Chronicles (as chronicled by Haunted Blackpool author Stephen Mercer, pictured above,  an ex-carer who rates carers his ‘real life heroes and heroines’) put the scare into carer with an exclusive Blackpool Ghost Walk in aid of the carers’ centre. The walking tour starts from Blackpool Tourist Information Centre at 7.30pm and lasts 90 minutes with plenty to raise the spirits as it pauses at the resort’s most haunted hotspots.

Sat June 8 - Mini Care Fest from 11am to 6pm. Featuring well-being, crafts, workshops, games, food and live music (including local band 11th Hour). A festival EXCLUSIVELY for young carers aged eight to 21 from across the region to herald to start of national carers week. Places must be pre-booked. Contact Michaela Goodridge 01253 393748.

Mon-Tue June 10-11 - Wakepark Wipeout.  Your chance to show Richard Hammond a clean pair of heels   - and how to tackle a giant inflatable ego. Or rather obstacle. We were thinking of someone, sorry something, else. This is going to be fun - with a capital W for wet. and Young Carers Champion Shannon will be making a splash there too.  It's the ultimate giant inflatable challenge for colleagues, family and friends. A unique way to ‘Make A Splash for Carers’ by having a fun-filled time, team building, raising awareness, supporting carers. All happening at Weeton-based Blackpool Wakepark over two days. Last few places and time slots available at just £20 per person (wetsuits provided). Contact Terri Hodkinson 01253 393748

Wed June 12 – Awareness raising. Volunteer recruitment at Houndshill Shopping Centre.  10-2pm.  Alison Brown volunteer co-ordinator will be raising awareness and chatting to people about Blackpool Carers Centre and the many Volunteer opportunities available.  Contact Alison 01253 393748.

Thu June 13 - Adult Carers Information event at Houndshill Shopping Centre.  Come along and speak to the Adult carers team about the support and services available to adult carers. You can also drop in on an information event same day at Beaverbrooks House from 12.30-3pm to learn how the team can support you. Representatives from other services and organisations will also be attending with information and support.

Sat June 15 11am-2pm – the third annual garden party, all welcome to an event themed All the Fun of the Fair. Sideshow games, raffles, prizes galore, BBQ, Health Checks by Spire, fortune teller, music, refreshments, plants, and much more. This has always been a really splendid event, emphasis on family fun and what better place to celebrate all the fun of the fair than in Blackpool. All welcome. Contact Julie Holland 01253 393748.

CASH QUEST FOR CARERS 2019 - the jury's out on when this starts proper (there's an information session this afternoon - June 3 on site at Beaverbrooks House but that's short notice)  but it traditionally begins in national carers week and the reality is that you can get involved at any time between now and the official end of the quest on September 30.  The more the merrier.  What's more the charity gives you a refundable £50 seed fund to invest wisely in growing money-making ideas. We've only lost one of the starter stakes to the best of our knowledge. And it still irks. 

Now this is the event which has given us no end of mirth and damn good coverage in the past thanks to carers bangers and burgers being sold by butcher Nigel Wilkinson;   the Goalden Girls,  a fantastically fit and fundraising force of women in their 50s and 60s, all runners, going Gangnam at FunnyGirls, staging a retro 70s flash mob dance at Grosvenor G, and scaling The Big One  - and local accountants Danbro taking on a massive tea trolley service challenge for their staff in their huge seafront headquarters. The Sandcastle WaterPark team have made a heck of splash to raise cash for several years running.   Dan Whiston, yes THAT Dan Whiston, super skater, choreographer,  has even organised hi energy Zumba sessions. 

Last year the event raised £8354.  We need to raise more, folks.

This year Danny – Champion of the Cash Quest - could be the headline as Blackpool’s Biggest Quiz is one of the midsummer highlights of the 3-month challenge.

The event, at the Spanish Hall on Friday, July 26, is hosted by party DJ and entertainer Danny Dalton of Music and Mayhem.

Danny’s hoping his big friendly but fiendishly fast smartphone family quiz will make him champion of the quest when the awards are presented In October.

“Think Bongos Bingo with a sprinkling of The Chase complete with live music - from singer songwriter Rebecca Baines – and mayhem and you might get somewhere close,” says Danny.  Minimum of five people per team, £5 per person to register, call 01253 393748 for tickets or prize donations.

“It’s a family event with bespoke questions, nothing unprintable or unsayable, no curve balls about religion or politics.

“It’s also about 100 per cent profits going to the charity – we’re looking for everything to be donated and to create an atmosphere which gives everyone a great time for a great cause.”

Danny’s a first timer to the annual Apprentice-style challenge but has been involved with the charity for some time. 

It's too early to confirm who's involved to date but fundraisers usually include big hearted local contractors who supported the DIY SOS Big Build for Children in Need in 2016 – this year James Shelliker of Acorn Woodcraft is taking on an eight-hour carveathon. His exquisite carved birds and animals already adorn the grounds of Beaverbrooks House.  Barry Edwards, another DIY SOS veteran, joins the Tower to Tower (Blackpool-Paris) cycle challenge in September.  Carl Vidoretti and John Green have regularly hosted golf tournaments.

Come on - get involved! 

Jacqui Morley

"Its also about 100 per cent profits going to the charity were looking for everything to be donated and to create an atmosphere which gives everyone a great time for a great cause."
Danny Dalton Music and Mayhem

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