Guide Dogs charity bowled over by Wrexham Tenpin fund-raiser

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A Wrexham bowling alley is striking out in aid of Guide Dogs for the Blind.

The charity will be taking over a batch of lanes for a fund-raising challenge at Tenpin at the Eagles Meadow Shopping Centre on Monday, July 24.

Eagles Meadow Ten Pin charity night for Guide Dogs for the blind. Pictured is Heather Worofka with Guide dog Una and Manager at Tenpin Eleni Morandi.

The money will go towards providing people like partially-sighted Heather Worofka, of Penycae near Wrexham, with highly-trained dogs such as her four-year-old Labradoodle named Una which she says has completely transformed her life.

Heather, 22, suffers from two conditions, Oculocutaneous Albinism and Nystagmus, that have left her with no central vision and extremely limited and very blurred peripheral vision.

Heather says that before being given a guide dog she was nervous about leaving her home unless it was with her mum at her side but since getting Una she’s managed to become very independent.

She said: “Una has totally boosted my confidence. I’m never in anymore. I go to Liverpool to visit my friend who is at university there or anywhere else I want to.

“I trained with Una and a trainer for 10 days to build up confidence but once I was alone I was just too afraid to go out. It took me a couple of weeks to actually build up enough courage to take the plunge.

“We get along so well and she is never far from my side. Having a guide dog has given me so much freedom.

“Una is fantastic and gives me lots of confidence. We definitely work as a team. “She’s so important to me and I don’t know what I’d do without her. I’d be lost that’s for sure.

“I’m now working three days a week as a volunteer at a local charity shop. Una comes with me to work and sits by me at the till. I just love her to bits.”

Jacquie Hughes Jones, a community fundraiser for Guide Dogs for the Blind, said: “We’re very grateful to Tenpin for allowing us the use of their lanes for the bowling session on July 24.

“Our session starts at 2pm and it’s open to anyone to come along and have a go. The cost is £10 for two games.

“There’s no need to book beforehand and it would be great to get a younger crowd along as there’s going to be a fantastic atmosphere.

“Apart from raising the profile of the charity it will also raise some much-needed cash to help provide dogs for people like Heather.

“It costs £52,000 a year to cover the costs over the working lifetime of a dog such as Una, which includes breeding and training.

“The charity usually also covers the cost of all the dog’s food but many owners decide they’d like to make a contribution towards that.”

One of the managers at Tenpin, Eleni Morandi, said: “We offer charity bowling sessions every Monday and Wednesday, which give a range of charities the opportunity to make some money for their funds.

“We’re delighted to do this and the sessions are always successful and lots of fun.

“They also give charities to chance to raise their local profile, which is always a good thing.

“We hope as many people as possible come along to support Guide Dogs for the Blind on July 24 as it’s an excellent cause which deserves plenty of backing from Wrexham people.”

For more details about Guide Dogs for the Blind, see the charity’s website at: http://www.guidedogs.org.uk