Community Service

Reading Abbey has supported the local, national and international community through our volunteer work and by donating funds to deserving causes.

Martina Platts (right), member of the Reading Abbey Rotary Club, presenting the cheque to Elina Zandersone, Manager of Smart Works Reading

Donating funds

Charity Gets Welcome Cash Boost

Smart Works, the Reading based charity which has helped over 300 women back into work, has received a ringing endorsement from the Reading Abbey Rotary Club.

Rotary members are so impressed by the charity's success rate, they're donating £ 1000 to help them continue their valuable work.
Smart Works set up in London Street 20 months ago and focuses on helping vulnerable women with low confidence get back into the workplace and move on with their life. The women, who vary in age from 17 to almost 70, are given a high quality interview outfit and a one to one interview coaching session. Sixty percent of clients get the first job they go for. 
Rotary member, Martina Platts, visited Smart Works to present the cheque to Elina Zandersone, Manager at Smart Works. Elina said: "'It's amazing to receive such support from another local organisation. It makes us feel welcomed into the local community and it means we can help those women from in and around Reading who genuinely need support with interview preparation and smart clothing'.

Reading Abbey is proud to have donated close to £60,000 to 40 charities over the last three years. Causes range from the local to global, benefitting the many or the few. The causes supported include:

  • Hope for Tomorrow
  • End Polio Now
  • Wyfold Riding for the Disabled
  • RYLA
  • Kids Cancer Charity
  • Helen & Douglas House
  • Rotary Doctor Bank
  • Keswick RC (Flood relief)
  • MS Society
  • Shelterbox
  • Berkshire Women's Aid
  • Dictionary4Life
  • Starlight Children's Foundation
  • Dingley Centre
  • Alzheimer's Society
  • Motor Neurone Disease Association
  • Berkshire Vision
  • Stoma Aid
  • Hilary Fish Donation
  • Ways & Means Trust
  • Number 5
  • Sue Ryder Foundation
  • Creating Better Futures
  • Berkshire Community Foundation
  • Parkinson's Society
  • Thomas Frost
  • Brainwave
  • Rotary Foundation
  • Launchpad Reading
  • Ufton Court
  • Reading Family Aid
  • Project Trust
  • Defibrillator (Crowne Plaza)
  • Stroke Unit, Royal Berkshire Hospital
  • Rivertime Boat Trust
  • Animal Rescue, Asia
  • British Skin Foundation


From mock interviews for school leavers to visiting elderly war veterans and helping primary school children with reading difficulties there's a variety of opportunities for all our members to play their part. Here are some of the community service activities we get involved with:

Mock Interviews - We provide interview practise for A'Level students preparing for university applications.

Ways and Means Kiosk - Ways and Means Trust (Link) is a Charity helping adults with learning or  physical disabilities, or poor mental health. We provide social and practical skills for independent living, and training, education and work experience to assist adults working towards open employment. Reading Abbey members volunteer at the Tea Kiosk in Caversham Court.

Carol Concert, Falklands Memorial Chapel - We help with car parking for this wonderful concert and readings organised by the League of Friends of the Royal Berkshire Hospital.

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