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Dad on furlough raises £600 for charity playing bingo

14 May 2020 By Rebecca Robinson

If there is one thing that has lifted spirits and brought communities together during this lockdown period, it’s one word; BINGO!


There has been a plethora of heart-warming stories, with bingo at the heart. From locals arranging street bingo games, celebrities hosting online bingo rooms and even A-list movie stars hosting online virtual bingo games for residents of a local assisted living complex. Not only is bingo a game that can be enjoyed by all, but it has proven a great way to bring communities together and help more isolated and vulnerable people feel a little less lonely.


In another story this week, a dad from Halesowen has been arranging bingo games for his street and has raised a whopping £600 for charity!


Bingo for charity


Mat McSwiggan has been arranging the charity bingo games for all the residents of Wheatcroft Close while he has been furloughed from his job at Beam Insurance. The money raised is being donated to an incredible charity that offers help and support for bereaved families.



The charity, Edward’s Trust, was set up by Peter and Hilary Dent in 1989, after their son, Edward, sadly died of cancer, aged just 7. It offers specialist counselling for families, bereavement retreats and social activities for children. Since the coronavirus crisis hit, their ability to raise funds for the charity came to a total standstill, so Mat decided to arrange the charity street bingo games to help.


Lifting community spirits


The most recent event was held on VE Day and the whole community got out the flags, bunting and balloons. Residents donated prizes for the games as well as sending over music requests to get the party going – all socially distanced of course!

Mat thanked all the local residents saying “Huge thanks to those who have donated to my JustGiving page and a massive thank you to the ‘Wheatcrofft crew’ for their input and kind donations for bingo prizes along with their music selections from all the residents. We had a great evening enjoyed by all.”

So far, Mat has raised over £600. If you want to donate you can do here or by visiting

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