InSight Magazine – Autumn 2023

Our latest edition of InSight is out now.

This edition includes:


Click here or the image above to read the latest edition of our InSight Magazine

The return of Yorkshire Day’s Club Wilber Raffle!
This year saw the return of our popular Yorkshire Day Raffle, in aid of Club Wilber, the children’s arm of our charity. The raffle was drawn live on social media and one of our tenants, Lee, drew the tickets for us! We wanted to say a big thank you to everyone who bought a ticket for the draw on the 1st August. We raised over £1500 for Club Wilber, which will go towards enabling us to put on more inclusive activities and events for the children, and their families. 
A big thank you too to all of the people and businesses who kindly donated a Yorkshire themed prize-
John Wrights Electricals, Simon Patterson, Assetiam, Delta by Marriott Hotel York, Masons of Yorkshire Gin, The York Roast Co, Flamingoland Resort, York Dungeon, The Deep, Yorkshire Sculpture Park, Pizza Express, Markinton Hall, Cross Fishmongers, Grant Young, Whittakers Gin, York Terrariums, LNER, Waste Management Co., North York Moors Railway, York City FC, Yorvik Viking Centre
Club Wilber turns 4!

A few weeks ago we returned to the Delta Marriott Hotel on Tadcaster Road to celebrate Club Wilber’s 4th Birthday! Originally planned as a garden party, like many we had to bring the fun indoors, but we were still able to play with all of the giant, garden games and enjoy our party food in the warm and dry!

Our annual birthday party is the perfect excuse to get our Club Wilber families together to catch up, and enjoy a selection of games for a few hours. This year we welcomed Richard from Limelight Hire with their photobooth and we all had the best time putting on the props and standing in front of the selfie mirror! The Activities and Events Team also made sure they got a couple of snaps!


We were treated to a party feast for lunch and afterwards we sang Happy Birthday and enjoyed a slice of the delicious traybake. Our Club Wilber children and young people left a with a summer themed party bag each, and a stack of photos from the photobooth!

Club Wilber started in 2019 and was the brainchild of our Operations Director, Samantha Scholey,  as a way of creating a club for children and young people with a visual impairment, and their families. We arrange accessible activities and events that the whole family can enjoy, regardless of vision and a welcoming place for children and parents to bond over common experiences.

Insight Magazine – Summer 2023 Edition

Our latest edition of InSight is out now.

This edition includes:

Club Wilber’s 3rd Birthday Party

On the 4th August, Club Wilber celebrated its 3rd birthday party at The Marriott Hotel in York and it was amazing to meet to celebrate this wonderful occasion.

It was great to welcome our Club Wilber ambassador Will Jubb from York City Knights Rugby Club who came to support this event along with some of our wonderful sponsors.

Guests were welcomed with a glass of Prosecco or fizzy elderflower as they arrived to the book themed party.  The room was decorated with The Jungle book, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and Alice in Wonderland decorations.

Everything was geared to be a sensory experience, on The Jungle Book craft table we made beautiful leather notebooks.  The leather had a lovely smell, and each piece had a different texture.  The parents then helped the children bind the paper between the leather using specialist metal studs and they enjoyed using the screwdrivers to tighten the studs.  They finished them off nicely with animal stickers and gems and some did great drawings inside them too.  We had lots of animal balloons hiding in the jungle watching us from above.

The special guest was one of our ambassadors, the award-winning author, Christina Gabbitas.  She came to read two of her books to the children.  She was amazing, giving the characters voices and singing songs she delighted the children.  The children were engaged and got to feel different fruit and vegetables mentioned in the book, tomatoes, broccoli, pineapple and even a dragon fruit!  She quoted a poem too and the children loved joining in.  We thank her for a wonderful opportunity to hear her stories.  These can be found online on her website

Alice in Wonderland’s Mad Hatter’s Tea Party was the theme for the afternoon tea.  With wonderful decorations for the table which consisted of a Mad Hatters hat, a white rabbit, and clocks… lots of clocks, the caterpillar on a giant toadstool, even the Cheshire Cat was watching us from above.  Everyone enjoyed afternoon tea with scones with jam and cream, sandwiches, sausage rolls, crisps, biscuits, and lots of “drink me” squash.

Samantha Scholey who was the founder of Club Wilber gave a speech and thanked everyone for their support and coming to celebrate with us, especially the sponsors who joined in the fun. We sang happy birthday to Club Wilber and enjoyed a delicious rocky road birthday cake.

The final game was a sensory pass the parcel.  Each layer was a different textured material.  Sweets and scented lavender were between the layers with a box of fidget toys as a main prize for the two lucky winners.

Everyone who attended got a golden ticket which was labelled “golden ticket” in Braille.  They took these to the Willy Wonka sweet table to claim their going home sweets and popcorn.

Everyone had a great time, and it was great to see the families have fun together.  Club Wilber continues to grow bigger and better each year and we look forward to a year ahead full of activities.

We want to say a big thank you to everyone who came – our ambassadors, sponsors and of course our Club Wilber families.


If you would like to volunteer and help us out with these amazing events then please check out our Volunteers Page.

InSight Magazine – Q3 2022 Edition

Our latest edition of InSight is out now.

This edition includes:


InSight Q3 2022 Cover

Click here or the image above to read the latest edition of our InSight Magazine or click the links below to hear it recorded in an audio format:

  1. CEO’s Letter
  2. Wilberforce House – Staff Perspective
  3. Club Wilber Pizza Party
  4. Living & Learning Zone
  5. Volunteering
  6. Fundraising & Sponsorship
  7. YorSensory – Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much
  8. York Talking News Advertisement
Club Wilber – Easter Egg Hunt 2022

Our Club Wilber Easter Egg hunt returned this year after the hiatus imposed by COVID19 restrictions.

The field was decorated with numerous egg hunting inspired decorations including hampers, baskets, signs, wind spinners, flowers, chicks, even a tipi and lots and lots of hay.

We hid the beeping eggs amongst the decorations, along with lots of chocolate treats and sweets ready for the children to find using their hearing.

The sun was shining, the decorations were in position, the eggs were hidden and then the Club Wilber families arrived, excited, happy and ready for a wonderful activity.

Each child put on some bunny ears and set off with basket in hand listening out for the beep of the eggs.  As always siblings could take part by wearing blindfolds.  Families were able to lay out their picnic blankets and join together for some Easter themed refreshments and enjoy time chatting and supporting one another.

After filling their baskets the children returned to exchange beeping eggs for chocolate Easter eggs to take home along with the treats they had found along the way.

We had some fabulous feedback from the families:

“It was definitely engaging. My child quickly got to grips with everything and it kept his interest for a good amount of time.  He loved the buzzing eggs”

“The atmosphere was great and you’ve managed to get such a lovely weather!  My child liked that there were eggs of different sizes – made it more interesting”

“Brought all the families together, lots of choc, you ordered the weather”

“Thank you for a fabulous egg hunt today, we loved it!!  And thank you for being thoughtful as always …”

“Thank you for today, kids loved it”

“Thank you for the lovely time today!  It was really eggciting!”

We couldn’t have run this event without the support of our volunteers who kindly donated their time on the day to setting up and running the event with us and for that we would like to say a HUGE thank you.

We also want to say a HUGE thank you to the following companies that donated to help us run this amazing event:

We will be back again next year with the Easter Egg hunt and look forward to seeing this event grow.

We also have a whole programme of different activities for Club Wilber so if you have, or know of a child 0-25 who has a visual impairment please get in touch at

Similarly if you would like to help us run more activities by joining as a volunteer, then please do get in touch at as we would love to welcome you to our work family.

InSight Magazine – Q2 2022 Edition

Our latest edition of InSight is out now.

This edition includes:


Click here or the image above to read the latest edition of our InSight Magazine.

Welcome to our Activities and Events Manager

Ellen and her team will be organising activities and events for the Learning and Living Zone and Club Wilber, looking after our amazing volunteers and overseeing our much needed fundraising.

Hello, my name is Ellen Harding.  Originally from West Yorkshire, I joined the Navy in 1991 and spent 16 years as a sailor!  Working on ships and ashore and I also was lucky enough to spend some time in the Falkland Islands. I then moved to New Zealand with my family for 8 years and I am now a dual national.  I have a huge passion for travelling (as you might guess) and have visited more than 30 different countries! On a weekend you will find me in my workshop with my toolbox out or covered in paint as I am an avid maker and crafter and I love nothing more than to make something special out of an old piece of furniture.

I wanted to work for Wilberforce Trust because I have been a volunteer all my life and have been looking for a role in the third sector for some years.  I am so rewarded when I have the opportunity to help people and I knew that I had the energy, enthusiasm and empathy to put into a role working with a charity.

I was attracted to the Activities and Events Manager role because of my background previous experiences.  I have been a Brownie Guider for 25 years putting together programmes for the different groups I have worked with. Seeing the smiles and laughter of enjoyment from these children gave me such motivation.  I worked with disabled children in some of my groups and it was interesting to see how the others empathised and were happy to work on the adapted activities. Plus, I am a born organiser with a lot of experience putting events together and rallying volunteers.  It is such a privilege to work with The Wilberforce Trust and I feel like a jigsaw piece that has finally slotted into place.

We are always on the lookout for volunteers to help with our events and activities.  If you have never volunteered before you should give it a try – the rewards are amazing. Volunteering can help you gain confidence by giving you the chance to try something new and build a real sense of achievement. You will be making a difference, meeting people, learning some new skills and best of all having fun!

Interested in volunteering?  Click here!

Club Wilber 2 Years On – Impact Report

We can’t believe how fast two years have gone, but with Club Wilber’s 2nd birthday it’s time to take a look back on everything we have achieved.

Take a look at our Impact Report to see how we and the Club Wilber families coped during COVID19 with online activities.  Read about our virtual scavenger hunts and an online Christmas.  Meet some of our families and our local sporting celebrity ambassador Will Jubb.  See a whole raft of photos and highlights of some of the great activities we’ve been enjoying together.

Read the report here.

Interested in supporting a great cause?  Support Club Wilber and get invited to our great networking events, we promise they’ll be something special and more fun than your typical networking.  Read more in the impact report and when you decide you can’t bear the FOMO (fear of missing out) sign up here.

Here’s a spoiler from the report some quotes from the Club Wilber families:

“Club Wilber is our VIP family where people just get it.”

“Club Wilber is an extension of our family, providing us with experiences and a sense of belonging with families that understand.”

“My daughter’s brother was amazed when he saw the other children with canes like his sister; it has been great for him to see and understand VI a little more and to meet other siblings and make friends.”

“Amazing people that run an amazing club giving families the opportunity to participate and enjoy activities together.”

“It is a big part of our lives & we rely on them for information about how to support our daughter.”

“We are extremely grateful for all that Club Wilber have done & continue to do. We have found out lots of information & taken part in lovely activities, with both our daughter & her brother, thank you.”