Aster Group colleague raises dough for charity over lockdown

An employee from housing association Aster Group has raised over £2,250 for local charities by selling her lockdown cakes.

Like many people across the country, Anna Dillon, resale and staircasing manager at Aster, has turned to baking in her spare time throughout 2020.

What started off as just a hobby for herself, as well as gifts for her family and neighbours, turned into a fundraising effort as Anna, who is from Bromham near Devizes, held bake sales during her weekends for five different charities by placing an honesty donation pot outside her house.

On her first bake she raised £66.50, which Anna’s partner matched to donate a total of £133 to Wiltshire Air Ambulance.

The following weekend, Anna raised money for Dementia UK, Aster’s charity of the year. The treats sold out within hours, raising £150 to help provide specialist support for patients, families and carers dealing with dementia.

Anna has gone on to raise £515 for Julia’s House children’s hospice based in Wiltshire and Dorset, with people continuing to donate through her Just Giving page.

In September she raised £288.50 for the Forever Friends appeal and most recently raised £328 for the Future Dreams charity to raise cash for breast cancer awareness.

Anna said: “I started baking this year to bring a smile to my friends and family who I couldn’t see or spend time with due to lockdown. I thought it’d be a great idea to see if I could find a way to raise money for charity as well.

“For anyone thinking about doing an event, even something small, it is really worth it. Giving something back is always good but when what you’re doing is your passion it’s even more rewarding.”

Aster has boosted Anna’s efforts as part of its match-funding programme, donating £1,050 to bring her overall total raised to over £2,250, which she plans to add to by continuing to hold monthly bake sales, to help raise vital funds for other charities.

Caroline Attreed, corporate fundraiser for Julia’s House, said: “We want to extend a big thank you to Anna and to Aster Group for their support. The families we care for have children with life-limiting or life-threatening conditions, and lockdown has been an especially worrying time for them. The money raised will help Julia’s House continue to offer them a much-needed lifeline of support. Well done Anna – you’re definitely our star baker!”

Sophie Hurst, regional fundraiser for Dementia UK, added: “Congratulations to Anna for raising £150 for Dementia UK by holding a bake sale! The money Anna raised could pay for a dementia specialist nurse to answer calls for an entire evening on our Admiral Nurse Dementia Helpline, when other sources of support have closed for the night. Everyone at Dementia UK is very grateful for your support!”

Back to latest news listings