Club gives Matt a 50th birthday boost

NBENBE110917J1, belper social club for the disabled . Colin Offer chairman presents a cheque to Matthew Olney from Belper who is going to Naminia on voluntary work.

NBENBE110917J1, belper social club for the disabled . Colin Offer chairman presents a cheque to Matthew Olney from Belper who is going to Naminia on voluntary work.

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A BIG-HEARTED schoolboy who wants to travel to Africa to do good works has received a £500 boost from Belper Social Club for the Disabled.

Chairman Colin Offer presented a cheque to Matthew Olney at the Club’s 50th anniversary party last week as a reward for his voluntary work.

Matthew, 16, is currently cleaning cars and doing odd-jobs to raise £3,000 for a four-week trip to Namibia and Botswana in July next year as part of Belper High School’s World Challenge scheme. He said: “I want to be a doctor and you need to do a lot of community and voluntary work. Thanks to the club’s kind donations I’ve nearly reached my target.”

Mum Jane said: “He goes on trips and pushes the wheelchairs and helps out at the social nights. He’s also been cleaning cars and getting £5 here and there – so this was a big chunk.”

Club secretary Barbara Pickering said: “He’s a lovely young man. He’s been helping out at the club for 18 months. He’s dedicated to what he wants and it’s going to be hard work. So we were happy to support him.”

Belper Social Club for the Disabled was founded through the church in 1961 by Alderman Ada Bellfield, Elsie Hodgkinson and Reginald Bird – the first Mayor of Belper.

Barbara added: “Transport was a big problem so we decided we needed to buy an ambu-bus. We started fundraising in 1984 for £20,000 which was a lot of money then. Since then we’ve gone from strength to strength. We’ve had a lot of good people help us.”

The club, which arranges transport for social evenings, bingo and day trips, meets on the second Wednesday of the month at Whitemoor Project Centre.