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£5,000 Charity Handout by Harper Adams

Posted 30 November 2004

Harper Adams students have handed out a bumper cash windfall to local charities, after a year of fund raising activities.

The students raised more than £5,000 through the RAG (Raise and Give) initiative, by organising barbecues, car washes, raffles, student events, a slave auctions and other activities. RAG chairman Stephen Hall, treasurer John Rossiter, and secretary Andrew Metson, invited representatives from ten charities to a presentation at the Newport university college on Friday, November 26. Each of the charities received £500 each.

The recipients included the Rural Support Network, which is based at Harper Adams and provides support for country dwellers suffering from stress in the UK. Helen Williams, the regional manager of the Rural Support Network said: “Since moving to the college campus in August we have enjoyed the contact with the students and their interest in the work we do. Receiving this generous donation is the icing on the cake and I hope that all the students involved and the Rag committee understand how much their hard work is appreciated. The funds will be used to reach people in isolated rural areas who need help and advice.

Shropshire Barn Owls, which will be putting their £500 towards building nesting boxes for owls, three of which are already dotted around the college campus, and Tibberton Primary School, will be asking pupils to help choose how to spend the cash.

Edgmond Scouts, Shropshire Riding for the Disabled, and Edgmond Owls (formerly Edgmond Pre-School) were also pleased to receive cheques, as were representatives of the Wellington branch of Cancer Research UK and Telford Guide Dogs for the Blind.

Harper student, Will Hobby, was awarded a cheque on behalf of Mattdotcom, the charity set up in memory of his best friend, Matthew Harding-Price, who died earlier this year after a three-year battle with bone marrow cancer. The charity provides IT equipment for teenagers in hospital, to help them continue their education, and the cash raised by RAG will pay for a laptop computer.

The final recipient was a former Harper Adams student, Colin Jeavens, who set up the charitable trust Driving Home, after breaking his neck in a holiday swimming accident four years ago. Despite suffering paralysis, he returned to the college to complete his degree and graduated last year. Since then, the Kenyan-born man, who now lives in Herefordshire, has spent his time fundraising for clinical spinal research, and the treatment and aid of patients with spinal injuries, and to drive from London to Cape Town to help with spinal charities in South Africa.

Harper Adams Principal, Professor Wynne Jones, said the RAG team had worked exceptionally hard to raise such a large sum, and he was delighted that so many of the local community had been able to benefit.

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