Fearsome foursome fund-raisers

The quartet with Mayoress of Burnley Tracey Rhodes
The quartet with Mayoress of Burnley Tracey Rhodes
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A quartet of young fund-raisers in Burnley are closing the generation gap and showing their counterparts the way when it comes to helping the community.

The civic Mayoress’ committee helps raise tens of thousands of pounds every year for charity.

This year a fearsome fundraising foursome is overturning the image of committee members of a certain age organising cream teas and selling Christmas cards.

The Mayoress of Burnley’s fund-raising committee has always boasted enthusiastic volunteers ready to get stuck into a wide range of activities to help worthy causes.

But this year the committee has some new, young blood. Teenagers Aimee Shearer (14), 16-year-old twins Xariah and Kamara Holt, and Millie Beswick (17) are busy helping Mayoress Tracey Rhodes and other members of the committee raise money for worthy causes in the borough.

Aimee, a student at Unity College, is the granddaughter of a former Mayor, Coun. Frank Cant. She is using her fund-raising experience as part of her work towards a Duke of Edinburgh bronze award.

Millie, who attends St Christopher’s CE High School’s sixth form, is in her third year on the committee. Twins Xariah and Kamara are newcomers to the committee but are no strangers to fund-raising. At just four years old they set up a trampoline in their garden and asked for charity donations to use it.

"It’s a good way to meet different people," said Aimee. "There’s no reason why young people can’t get involved in fundraising and help others.”

Committee secretary Ida Carmichael said: “I think it’s great that, at their age, they’re willing to put themselves out there and help the local community. It shows there are young people who are willing to get involved in helping others. They’re a great example for everyone, whatever their age.”

The girls' latest fund-raising drive involved leading a three-foot high stuffed reindeer toy around Burnley town centre during the Christmas lights switch-on celebrations, encouraging people to take part in a competition to win it.

Next stop is helping out at the annual civic ball and they expect to be busy over the coming months.