Yorkshire Building Society's charitable foundation raised £118,000 for Mencap last year. BBC TV presenter Philippa Forrester presented the money to a group of children with learning disabilities at the London Aquarium recently. The cash will be spent on developing Mencap's network of community support teams. The teams give advice and information on local health and education services for people with learning disabilities, their families and friends.
The appeal was launched using Mencap's official mascot, cartoon character Dennis the Menace. Throughout the year, staff at head office and Yorkshire's 131 branches raised money in a series of events. The fund-raising included selling Dennis the Menace Christmas cards and a competition where the public bought squares on posters displayed in branches for £1 with the chance to win prizes.
Each year the charitable foundation chooses a national appeal, as well as supporting a range of local charities around its branches. The charity for 2001 is yet to be chosen.
Yorkshire Building Society trustee Linda Will says: “The success of last year's appeal has far exceeded all our expectations.”