An SOS from Peter Pan Nursery

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We must ensure we keep our doors open to families, says head of fundraising Sophia Baker


We recently announced the devastating news that The Peter Pan Nursery for Children with Special Needs will not be receiving second round funding from the National Lottery at the end of October 2013. We are now making a plea to both local businesses and the Staffordshire and Cheshire community to raise money on our behalf and help us to beat the shortfall.

The Peter Pan Nursery for Children with Special Needs is based in Newcastle-under-Lyme and we provide education and support to children with special needs aged birth to five years and their families.

It is the only setting of its kind in the region offering one-to-one and one-to-two educational support for children who have a wide range of disabilities, conditions and syndromes, such as Cerebral Palsy, Down Syndrome, Autistic Spectrum Disorder, visual and hearing impairments, physical delays and Speech and Language delays.

It currently costs us £250,000 a year to keep the charity running at its current capacity. We have a growing waiting list of more than 20 children and now we are not receiving £100,000 from the national lottery fund, we are in desperate need for support.

The news of us not receiving the lottery funding is of course devastating for our charity. However, we are now looking to the future and have confidence in local businesses and community supporters that they will help us to achieve our target this year.

We want to be able to keep our doors open to families who are in need of our service, whilst also decreasing the waiting list of children who would benefit from our care and support. We won’t be able to do this if we do not receive donations and fundraising support this year.

There are a number of ways we are looking to replace this shortfall, including seeking new funding and grant sources, but also raising the profile of our cause and making sure that we have a regular income of both corporate and community donations. We can no longer rely on the significant grants from the Lottery and indeed other sources, our aim for the future is to facilitate for sustainability and look beyond the usual fundraising methods.

That being said, we still feel very strongly about community and corporate fundraising which is why we have introduced, over the past two years since my posting, a range of annual fundraising events, regular income generator programmes and specific fundraising campaigns.

For example; we are now encouraging businesses to join the CLUB 100! We are selecting a hundred local businesses who will be nominated to fundraise on our behalf. Each business will raise £1000 to help us to replace our missing lottery funding. 

We also have a regular charity lottery and supporters can head to and register online for £1 a week (paid by direct debit), and be in with a chance of winning £25,000. This not only provides us with regular weekly funding but the donor can also be in with a chance of winning a fantastic prize.

Our regular fundraising events either ran by ourselves or through our corporate and community fundraisers are a great way to communicate our need and raise money. On the run up to Christmas we have events including a charity fashion show, Mayors charity firework display, our annual Christmas Fayre, an acoustic music event and more.

Our parents are also getting behind the cause with sponsored walks in the Snowdonian Mountains and personal physical challenges such as the very popular Tough Mudder event.

We cannot express how important these events are to us and we are so grateful for those who have helped us so far and those who are planning for the future. However, there is room for more and more events to be added to our calendar.

The primary goal of our charity is to ensure that an excellent standard of care is provided for every child. We have been awarded Grade 1 level Outstanding in our Ofsted inspection, and want to continue to provide this much needed and vital service to families in the region.

For more information about The Peter Pan Nursery’s Tick-Tock SOS campaign and how to get involved please contact: Sophia Baker, Head of Fundraising by Tel: 01782 715219 or email:

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