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2018 NEWS 

November 2018


Wool With

a Mission

Wool With A Mission is knit and

natter group, who want to inspire

and encourage each other. They offer a warm and friendly environment where skills can be shared while children play together. They meet monthly in Woosehill. 


Special Thanks to volunteer Vicky Perry from Wool With A Mission, who has started a partnership with First Days encouriging people to knit or crochet ‘Knitted with Love’ clothing, which will be given to local children in need. Vicky says: “It would be good to reach out to people who would be willing to knit or crochet. The greatest need at the moment, I gather, is for new-born baby clothes. So – do you knit or crochet? Or does your Mum, Mum-in-law or Grandmother? Could you – or they – produce something very simple. We are going to work together on this project – with WoolWAM widening it’s scope to include – not just the lonely or isolated – but anyone who would like to knit for local families in need. They wouldn’t need to be able to get to our monthly meetings – they could simply knit at home in their own time – and we can sort out a way to collect/drop off the finished items.”


First Days are delighted to receive the beautiful “Knitted with Love” items and really appreciate the support received from Wool With a Mission.


December 2019


We've had a couple of

real life Santas helping

at First Days in December.


A team from Reading based Splunk came in on a corporate volunteering day back in September. The team then banded together and provided around 20 of our Christmas gift bags to make sure every one of the children referred to us before Christmas gets presents from Father Christmas. 


Today, Tobias and Brynn from the firm have taken time out to deliver Christmas presents and general items to referrers struggling to get to our

offices to collect before we

close for Christmas.


The hire place was out of

reindeers and sleighs so they

have just hired a normal van.


A massive thank you to

Brynn, Tobias and everyone

at Splunk for your support

this year. #splunkforgood

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Thursday 9th August 2018


Pride of Reading Awards - a double nomination!


We're delighted that three

members of our hard

working First Days team have

been nominated for Pride of

Reading awards!

Heather and Ian Clarke are up

for the Volunteer of the Year Award in recognition of the literally thousands of hours that they have given the the charity. Our founder and Chairman of Trustees, Emma Cantrell, has been nominated as Community Champion for her work with First Days and her day job heading up Oxford Neonatal Charity SSNAP.

Well deserved recognition for three fantastic people. Good luck to them all for the awards.

About Heather and Ian's nomination:

About Emma's nomination:

Sunday 29th July 2018

Cyclists conquer

the RideLondon100 for First Days

Three intrepid cyclists have gone above and beyond to raise money for First Days by completing the gruelling RideLondon 100 mile route from the Olympic Park in East London, across the capital, into the Surrey hills and finishing back on The Mall in front of Buckingham Palace.


All three have spent the last few week training in blistering heat, only to face lashing rain on the day itself.  Despite this, our first rider home, Neil, managed the route in an amazing 6 hours 10 minutes, and our second rider, Nick, was close behind in 6 hours 37 minutes.  Last but certainly not least, our third cyclist, First Days Referrals Manager Maria, crossed the line after cycling for 8hrs 11mins.

What a massive achievement by all our cyclists, and over £2000 raised to help First Days support local families. Congratulations to all our riders.

A massive thank you as well to Complete Childcare Nurseries Limited who sponsored our cycle jersies.

If you are interested in taking part in 2019, email


September 2018


Volunteer Open Day

As a big huge THANK YOU to all our wonderful volunteers and to show off our new premises, we invited everybody to join us for pastries and drinks. We also alld any new volunteers to pop in and say Hi!. It was a wonderful morning and it was great to see so many familiar and new faces.

Friday 3rd August 2018


We’ve moved!

This week marked a huge moment for First Days - we officially finished our move from our old office in Woodley to our new home in Hurst.

We therefore need to say an enormous thank you to everyone who has helped. To the generous supporters who donated to our moving fund; to everyone who has been so patient and understanding about why we have had to put donations on hold for the moment; to our referrers (especially those recently who didn't know where or when they could collect their items); to those who came to the Relocation Sale and to everyone who offered ideas and words of encouragement, support and advice.

A special thanks also goes to our volunteers (both individual and the numerous corporate teams) and staff who have packed boxes, moved boxes (including boxes of boxes!), sorted through what felt like millions of clothes and baby vest, taken desks apart, moved washing machines, dryers, cabinets, racking, cupboards, desks and more, gave us space in their cars and trailers, helped set up and run with the sale, and loaded/unloaded our van, all in temperatures over 30 degrees and down steep, enclosed stairs.

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