Northampton charitable fashion show to promote sustainability

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Wannabe designers and models in Northampton who have learning disabilities, Autism or a complex mental health condition are coming together to host a charity fashion show.

Wannabe designers and models in Northampton who have learning disabilities, Autism or a complex mental health condition are coming together to host a charity fashion show.

Sustainable fashion and showcasing one-off designed pieces will top the bill at the event, which is being held in one of the town’s most historic buildings, the Main Building on the site of St Andrew’s Healthcare.

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A ‘Great Night of Fashion’ is being held in partnership with the complex mental health charity, the fundraising group JAM and clothes company SOS on Wednesday, June, 19, 2024 from 6pm onwards.

Morgan is a Workbridge Learner and she is looking forward to taking part in the showMorgan is a Workbridge Learner and she is looking forward to taking part in the show
Morgan is a Workbridge Learner and she is looking forward to taking part in the show

The show will open with items that have been sourced from the Workbridge charity shop and will feature fashion that has been upcycled as part of the learners’ sustainability project in the Workbridge Arts and Innovation Hub.

Later in the evening SOS Clothes, with up to 75% off, from big brands such as Zara, Topshop, ASOS and Marks and Spencer will also be modelled. Members of the audience can then browse through and buy items after the show paying hugely discounted prices.

Morgan Iliff, who has been attending Workbridge education sessions for six years now, said: “We’ve worked very hard on this project and we’ve had to think about how we could take some clothing and make it more interesting.

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“I've really enjoyed redesigning charity shop clothing in Creative Arts with my friends. I am really looking forward to showing off what I have made at the fashion show.”

St Andrew’s Healthcare’s CEO Dr Vivienne McVey said: “Although our staff here are very serious about the care and wellbeing of our patients and service users, it doesn’t mean we can’t have fun with them. Our Great Night of Fashion event is something we’ve never done before and we’re all thrilled to be hosting a completely different concept which heavily involves the people within our care.

“A lot of hard work, dedication and creativity has gone into making some of the items of clothing that will be showcased on the catwalk so I hope lots of people come along and are generous with their purchases. I’m sure the night will be a lot of fun and I’m really looking forward to see what is up for grabs.”

There will also be an opportunity to buy bespoke artwork created by patients and community learners following the recent Art Deco exhibition at 78 Derngate. This will take place through a silent auction.

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Workbridge is located on the Old Laundry site, Bedford Road where visitors can shop at the charity shop, garden centre, ceramics studio and dine at the café.

Part of St Andrew’s Healthcare, Workbridge also provides a vocational education service, which has been developed to support people living with a mental health need, autism, learning need or brain injury.

Patients and community learners are supported to learn vital life and employment skills through a mixture of skills-led sessions and work experience.

Tickets for the event cost £15 and will include a glass of bubbly and canapés on arrival. All funds raised will be ploughed back into the patients and community learners. Tickets can be purchased here.

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The raffle prizes on the evening promises to be exciting and all proceeds from this go towards JAM's fundraiser #Jamathon2024 that is supporting three local charities, which are Project 16:15, Community Spaces N'ton and N'ton SENDS 4 Dad.

JAM, set up by Julia Harris, Ann Brebner and Mandy Lagden, was named after the letter of each of their first names. Although JAM was founded in 2021, the trio met back in 2016 where they became firm friends through a mutual enjoyment of working together on a fundraiser.

Julie said: Since inception we have raised £25,000 for local charities. Our work is entirely voluntarily and we collaborate with businesses and individuals. We are not a charity or a CIC, just 3 friends doing our bit.

“We lend a helping hand when asked and we’re thrilled to be collaborating with Workbridge on this fundraiser. The event is not only a celebration of the incredible work St Andrews does but also a wonderful opportunity to raise awareness of what JAM is all about and some more funds for the three charities our #jamathon2024 is raising for this year.”

To purchase ticketsclick here.