By Jazmine Ella Blackah
GUIDE DOGS, staff and volunteers were at Leeds train station on Friday (October 13) as part of Guide Dogs Week in the hope of raising awareness and money for the charity.
The four-legged friends took all of the spotlight and caught the attention of everyone at the station as members of the public got to meet the dogs.
This year was a big success as the charity raised £1,500 – topping last year’s total of £1,179.
Guide Dogs Week ran from October 7 to October 14 and events were held throughout the week to help raise awareness of what Guide Dogs do and raise money for the charity.
Ben Drury, 52, head of mobility services at Guide Dogs said: “Guide dog week is a celebration of what we actually do as an organisation and also it’s an opportunity to showcase what we do and promote the services we deliver.
“The biggest draw that we have got here today is the dogs.
“As a registered charity we rely on donations from the public to deliver the work that we do. We don’t receive any government support and it is very competitive for all charities now to bring in the income.”
Jo Stevens, 44, a community fundraising development officer for North Yorkshire at Guide Dogs, said: “There are so many charities about and it is becoming more and more difficult.
“What we try to do as a charity is think of different fundraising events and think outside the box.
“We have a theme and this year it is ‘move it for money’.
“So basically it’s about what motivates you to move it and to raise money for Guide Dogs so we use it to raise as much money as we can during that week but also to promote the work of Guide Dogs as well.
Another very big highlight of the week was a sponsored belly dancing class at the University of Law in Leeds.
Mr Drury said: “We were taught by a professional belly dancer and we tried to follow what she was doing.”