Volunteering for The Nelson Trust


May 15, 2019



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As part of our efforts to support local charities, the PT team recently spent a fabulous day volunteering for The Nelson Trust at their annual Clay Pigeon Shoot fundraising event.


The Nelson Trust is based in Stroud, and their aim is to help people recover from drug and alcohol addition and abuse.  They provide residential addiction treatment for both men and women, to help them begin a lifelong recovery and improve the quality of their lives.  The Nelson Trust provides the care and practical help to enable people to make a fresh start and live independently, and has also set up four local enterprises to provide training opportunities, as a stepping stone to help them return to work.


For the past four years The Nelson Trust has hosted a Clay Pigeon Shoot at the Folly in the grounds of Berkeley Castle.  This event is the charity’s biggest fundraiser of the year, and 32 teams of local businesses and shooting enthusiasts signed up, all keen to try their hand before enjoying a black tie dinner at Berkeley Castle in the evening.


Our involvement began early in the morning when a couple of us arrived to help set everything up.  The Folly is a really unusual venue, in a beautiful setting, and we were lucky enough to enjoy it under blue skies and sunshine. Our job was to help put up the marquees and signage, and then set out the tables and everything required for refreshments and registration.   Once the guests arrived, we were kept very busy on the BBQ stand and serving teas and coffees.  Everyone was in a great mood, enjoying the sun and looking forward to a good day’s shooting.


In the afternoon the other members of the PT team got involved, as part of a band of volunteers in charge of the scoring.  There were two of us per station, and when the shooting began our role was to record the number of missed clays.  The higher the number, the worse the team’s score.  Counting the misses required a huge amount of concentration as the shots were fired thick and fast, and we also had to watch out for falling clays!  There were also ‘endangered species’, clays containing coloured powder which when hit resulted in a five point penalty.   At the same time we had to keep on top of the constantly growing pile of empty cartridges and ensure they were disposed of properly.


By about 4pm all the teams had finished shooting and our volunteers could relax.  All in all it was a great day and we really enjoyed the experience.   It was a privilege to be involved in such a worthwhile event, and to be able to appreciate such a wonderful setting.   The total amount raised exceeded a staggering £60,000, and we are delighted to have played a small part in helping The Nelson Trust to achieve this!


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