Alexandra Rose Charities, until fairly recently known as Alexandra Rose Day, originated in 1912 when a young girl went out selling roses from her own garden in aid of charity. So this year marked their centenary, and to celebrate this they announced that the charities they assist, limited to those caring for the elderly, the handicapped or children, could keep all the money raised in their street collections.
Of course, the real roses initially handed out in return for donations had to give way to artificial fabric ones, with pins, and, later, printed self-adhesive stickers, but the principle of selling roses for charity has been maintained for 100 years.
In West Chiltington we have a small local branch of the Children’s Society, a well-known national charity whose Safe on the Streets programme helps some of the hundred thousand under-sixteens who run away from abuse, bullying or violence at home each year and end up sleeping rough in back alleys or bus shelters, a desperate situation. It gives them somewhere they can feel safe and helps them make a new start in life.
On Saturday morning, 16th June, six of us were collecting. Three in Storrington Shopping Precinct took £191.24, and two in another part of Storrington a further £59.69. Meanwhile, in West Chiltington, I was given £136.07 outside Nisa Local (Cherilyn). It was windy, but at least it didn’t rain this year.
My brother collected £61.50 house-to-house in the Martlets area, while I had the pleasure of going round our own friendly road, collecting for charity being a good opportunity for chatting to neighbours, and this time raising £101.50.
Our thanks to all who contributed to the total of £550, of which we have sent £16.30 to Alexandra Rose Charities (10 per cent of the house-to-house total) and the balance of £533.70 to the Children’s Society.