Jan and guide dog Celia inspire beavers 

DOWNEND-based beaver scouts  ran and baked their way to a big fundraising total for charity Guide Dogs UK.

The young members of 78th Kingswood Beavers, based at Downend Methodist church, were inspired by a visit from Jan Peters, of Mangotsfield, who told them how dogs can help people who are blind or have a visual impairment.

Jan introduced them to Celia, a ten-year-old golden Labrador-retriever cross who recently retired after six years as her guide dog.

Beavers leader Jenny Wheeler said: “We had been undertaking our disability awareness badge and were very lucky to have a visit from Jan, who has a visual impairment herself.

“She told us all about how the dogs get trained and what a lifeline the dogs are to people with visual impairment. 

“We learned a lot from her, and we wanted to do something as a thank-you, and to support the work of Guide Dogs UK.”

The beavers staged a sponsored run, where all 12 of the youngsters, aged six to eight, ran as many circuits as they could of the Methodist church building, despite pouring rain.

They then held a bake sale, inviting the group’s cubs and scouts to buy their wares.

Together the two events raised £385, and the beavers invited Jan and South Gloucestershire Guide Dogs volunteer Monica Cave to receive the money in November.

Jan said the beavers’ fundraising total was “fabulous”.