Foresters Friendly Society donates nearly £100,000 to Guide Dogs for the Blind

Foresters Friendly Society, the Southampton-based member-owned society which offers a range of financial products, has donated nearly £100,000 to Guide Dogs for the Blind Association.  Members of the Society raised £94,037 through a series of fundraising events throughout the UK.  A further £2,050 was collected at the Society’s AGM in June with a pledge to increase the final amount to £100,000 before the account closes.

Foresters branches raised money for ‘Buddy Dogs’ a new scheme from Guide Dogs for the Blind that helps blind children build vital communication and mobility skills.  Dogs which weren’t suited to the full guide dog programme are being specially trained and then placed with families and schools.  Young people then have the opportunity to feed, groom and walk their buddy dog, ultimately gaining the skills they might need for future guide dog ownership*. 

Richard Darlington (the Society’s President 2011/12) and his wife Doreen with a guide dog puppy in training.

Sally Waterfield, Marketing Manager, Foresters Friendly Society, said: “Our members have raised a phenomenal amount of money in a short space of time to support Guide Dogs for the Blind.  The Buddy Dogs scheme is a great service which helps blind and partially sighted children enhance their lives through increased mobility and take advantage of the proven benefits attributed to dog ownership.”

The Foresters Friendly Society President’s Appeal for the next twelve months will be Macmillan Cancer Support. 

* For more information about Buddy Dogs go to