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Event Management learners bounce back to raise £650 for Piam Brown Ward during the Christmas Fayre

Event Management learners at Eastleigh College have successfully delivered the first in-person community fundraising event since the Covid-19 pandemic, raising £650 for the Piam Brown Ward in Southampton Children’s Hospital.

Established in 2013, the Christmas Fayre has grown to become one of the marquee events in the college calendar. Over £4000 has been raised since its initial launch, with stalls specialising in toys, handmade ornaments, sweets, hot drinks and eco-friendly beauty products. With last year’s event hosted virtually due to social distancing, learners were delighted to welcome visitors back to campus, and activities including a tombola and a treasure hunt ensured a fun and festive outing for all the family.

Caroline Perrett, Lecturer in Events Management, said: ‘The Christmas Fayre provides a real range of transferable skills that can help learners in their future careers. This includes hard skills such as finance, marketing and health and safety but also softer skills including communication, problem solving, contingency planning and customer service. A number of our learners have also gone on to have roles in project management.”

The Christmas Fayre has been designed to be inclusive of both first and second year Event Management learners. Initial planning begins in the first year, with learners generating a list of roles and responsibilities. Over the summer they devise job adverts and posters, then recruit new first year learners to fill these roles upon their return. CVs are drawn up and interviews are held, helping learners to simulate their own recruitment process. 

Second year Event Management learner Libby Fall said: “I want to go into event planning in the future and project managing the Christmas Fayre has given me a real insight into the responsibilities involved in running an event.”

All money raised will be donated to Piam Brown, the Wessex Regional Children’s Cancer Ward, at Southampton Children’s Hospital. This initiative began following a learner’s suggestion six years ago to support her nephew, who was a patient at Piam Brown. The department responded by inviting learners on a tour of the ward, to show them how their donations would be used. This tradition has continued each year, barring the pandemic, allowing learners to see first-hand the impact of their hard work.

Rachel Fuller, Piam Brown Coordinator, said: “We’d like to say a huge thank you to everyone at Eastleigh College for supporting our Piam Brown (Children’s Cancer) Ward at Southampton Children’s Hospital through their Christmas Fayre. This donation is going to go a long way to improve the experiences of all our young patients and their families, and will enable us to organise activities like day trips and outings as well as funding research and education. We’re enormously grateful.”

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